Community activists organize peace walk for Saturday
BY HALEY JONES
Statesville native Priscilla Lowe and Pastor Virginia Byers are tired of the crime and violence plaguing the southside of town – and they are planning to do something about it.
The two women are part of Statesville CAN (Citizens Activist Network), an activist group that has organized a peace walk for Saturday, August 12. The walk, titled “We Are All One In Peace Against The Violence,” will begin at 11 a.m.
Everyone is invited to participate in the walk, which will begin at the Christian Outreach Church at 1424 Rickert Street and end at The Bentley Community Center, located at 324 Wilmington Ave. If weather is bad, participants are asked to meet at The Bentley Center.
Lowe, Byers and other organizers hope to bring citizens of Statesville and the surrounding areas together to support of one another and to bring attention to crime and violence in the community.
“We want to stand against all (the) violence that is happening around us. Let’s put it to a stop. Let’s not just talk about it. Let’s march and be heard,” Lowe wrote on the group’s Facebook page. “I’m tired of seeing our community going through what they are. Our young people are killing each other. It’s time for change. Everyone who is tired of being tired of this violence – meet us here. Violence must stop. We are all one.”
The inspiration of this movement stems from the realization of how crime affects people locally. Reaching out to young people to provide support may help prevent future crimes, according to organizers.
“We can bring change now, and let the young people know we do care for them,” Lowe said. “Let them know that they don't have to go out and do the things they do for money or attention. We can all work together to help one another (by) not looking down on them, giving them what they want or expecting the worst out of our youth.”