Ever thought about being a “hope dealer?” On Saturday, I Believe in Me, Inc., an organization committed to the mentoring and of Frederick youth, hosted a rally, Stop The Violence, in Baker Park.
Founder, Aje Hill, expressed his concerns about community safety in a published statement; these sentiments shared by residents of Frederick sparked the rally of change.
Our society is getting numb to watching our youth and communities turn to violence as a voice or motive. We need more UNITY, HOPE and LOVE to enter into our communities, especially those who have been marginalized, with the message that violence is never the answer. Our youth deserve a community of peace, where all may have the opportunity to live up to their fullest potential, offering them a safe environment to grow and prosper.
The Stop the Violence rally helped to spread awareness about community resources provided by local non-profit organizations, agencies, businesses, and churches to magnify community leaders’ voices that inform the general public about health and wellness, workforce development and peaceful intervention.
The rally hosted multiple panels that explored and discussed multi-faceted issues appealing to the heart and mind. Pastors and their respective clergy commenced the program with prayer. Testimonies were broadcast from mothers who have lost their children to gun violence. Frederick law enforcement Sheriff Chuck Jenkins, Chief Lando, and State Attorney Charlie Smith shared special remarks. An array of organizations presented dialogue on housing and education access, and business and government in order to provide community supports.
The rally ended on a panel with gun violence victims reminding the public of their stories and National Gang Specialist and Youth Advocate, Shanduke McPhatter. Voices of change rang out into the park with hopes the echoes will reverberate throughout the city for many generations to come.
“Tell a friend to tell a friend before a senseless tragedy ends up on your or a loved one’s door steps. The greatest time is the present, let’s act together!” – IBM, Inc.
Become a hope activist today!
Photography Credit: Lytebox Photography