Last week 10-year-old Sierra Guyton was shot while she played in the schoolyard at Clarke Street School. That, along with many other incidents, has fueled a group of middle school students at MPSâ€™ Westside Academy II, to organize an event to speak out against violence.
Put the Guns Down is slated for Wednesday, June 4, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Our Next Generation, 3421 W. Lisbon Ave. All are welcome to attend and admission is free. There will be free food, raffle prizes and free Put the Guns Down bracelets.
A poster for the event reads, "Attention teens -- are you sick of the gun violence in your neighborhood? Take a stand with other teens in your community. Meet with other teens from across the city to discuss the issue of gun violence and come up with solutions to improve our community."
I learned about the event via Jennifer Koss, a teacher at Westside Academy II. On Facebook, Koss told friends, "As we know, the violence is getting out of control in Milwaukee. There were seven people shot last night, including two on the block my school is located on. My Serve 2 Unite students are fed up with the violence and want to do something about it. They are hosting a youth anti-gun violence summit."
"Serve 2 Unite emerged in a spirit of defiance," reads the groupâ€™s web site. "The hate behind the murders was met with an ongoing practice of fearless, creative, compassion. Rooted in the Sikh principle of service to others, and relentless optimism in the face of adversity, Serve 2 Unite today engages young people of all backgrounds to value humanity and the aspiration of living a genuine, honest life as a peacemaker."
Serve 2 Unite works with students at MPSâ€™ Washington High School, Hampton Elementary, Fernwood Montessori, Audubon, Westside II and NOVA Academy, and Escuela Verde.
In a press release for the Put the Guns Down summit, Koss wrote,Â "So often we focus on the negative things that the youth of our city are doing. Now is the chance for us to recognize the positive work that many youth throughout the city are doing. Many of these students face violence on a daily basis (houses getting shot up, having guns pulled out on them,being shot at, losing family members to gun violence, etc.), and want to see change in our community. That change starts with highlighting the youth who are working hard as leaders in their neighborhood."
The students hope to draw at least 100 teens from across the city to the summit.
They are still seeking raffle prizes and adult facilitators for the June 4 event. If you can help, please email Jennifer Koss.
No Talkbacks for this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Bobby Tanzilo
Published June 29, 2016
The more I fly, the less I enjoy it. Sure, I like the feeling of freedom, of being out roaming and seeing the world and experiencing new places. But last night's attack on Istanbul's Ataturk Airport really shakes me.
Published June 28, 2016
Tis the season for 11 days of nearly non-stop music at the Henry Maier Festival Park. Here, Bobby Tanzilo scours the Big Gig schedule to make some suggestions for some must-see acts at Summerfest 2016, starting, of course, with Sir Paul.
Published June 23, 2016
Today, I spent a little time with architect Craig Eide and Fernwood Montessori School principal John Sanchez touring the Bay View public school's new addition, which is expected to be complete by mid-July, for a Sept. 1 first day of school.
Published June 21, 2016
Recently, we visited Engine Co. 6 on Brady Street, a firehouse that, in addition to being well-known in the neighborhood, has a long history on the East Side. The first station was built here in 1875 and was replaced with the current building in 1946.
Published June 15, 2016
On Tuesday, Milwaukee Christian Center's Neighborhood Improvement Project "dropped" another modular home for low-to-moderate-income families into place on Milwaukee's South Side, in the shadow of the St. Josaphat dome near Lincoln Avenue.
Published June 14, 2016
More than a century and a half after the opening of the first brewery in Milwaukee, the city's identity is still drenched in beer. At Forest Home Cemetery, many of the men who made the beer that made Milwaukee famous lie in repose. You can "meet" them at Brunch with the Barons.
Published June 13, 2016
Last October, Marquette University opened a new Jesuit Residence. But one reader knew I'd be more interested in the building the priests formerly called home. So join me as we take a last look at the old Stratford Arms Hotel before it is razed in July.
Published June 9, 2016
"American Epics: Thomas Hart Benton and Hollywood" is at Milwaukee Art Museum from June 10 through Sept. 5. Here are seven works that especially caught the eye. But, rest assured, in a show with about 100 Benton works, there's plenty more.
Published June 7, 2016
Milwaukee as it could be. That's how artist John O'Neill approaches his unique, colorful, engaging and action-packed Milwaukee Envisioned series of drawings of the city, which mash up the past, present and potential future of the Brew City.
Published June 3, 2016
The Maryland Avenue Montessori School building has been growing periodically ever since the first school was opened on the site in the mid-1860s. With one of MPS' most successful and popular programs bursting at the seams of the building, a new addition is coming.