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Youth summit in Birmingham aiming to helping curb youth violence this summer

Published: Apr. 21, 2022 at 10:52 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Leaders in Birmingham are teaming up try and help curb youth violence across the city with a new youth summit for kids and teens.

It includes the Birmingham Parks and Recreation, A.G. Gaston Boys and Girls Club, and Mayor’s Office Division of Youth Services.

“A lot of times they don’t know other avenues that they can go down,” Director of Birmingham Parks and Recreation Board Shonae’ Eddins-Bennett said. “We thought it would be wise for us to get a jumpstart on the summer to try and curtail some of this. We want to show them other avenues that they can go down versus doing what they are currently. There is more to life than gun violence, fighting, and crime.”

Eddins-Bennett said there will be expert panelists to answer the kid’s questions.

“Sometimes they won’t tell their parents or they won’t tell their teachers,” she said. “So, we are reaching out to them first to get questions before the summit, so the panelists can answer them.”

She said there will also be job opportunities, including two openings with Parks and Rec that will be raffled off.

“We will have opportunity for employment for the summer,” Eddins-Bennett said. “We will have door prizes and giveaways, so I think it will be fun and enjoyable for them. Some vendors will be hiring on the spot.”

She said they are hoping to offer resources to help keep them on a positive path.

“Educating them in these areas will be very beneficial to them,” she said. “Even if we save one, we have done our part.”

The youth summit is open to everyone, no appointment needed. It will be on Saturday, May 7, from noon until 2:00 p.m. at Legion Field.

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