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Activists from Central Arkansas gather in Little Rock in a show of unity and nonviolence



Little Rock, Arkansas – Peace activists from all around Central Arkansas gathered in Little Rock to make their voices heard.

In a show of unity and support, dozens of organizations marched alongside the Pettus Helping Hands Foundation in an effort to put an end to the violence.

“We just want to raise awareness to let everyone know. We’ve got people from all neighborhoods and all walks of life coming here together as one to show love and unity,” Pettus Helping Hands Foundation, Founder, Kris Pettus, said.

The following groups participated in the Little Rock Peace Walk: Empower My Environment, Suited N Booted, Legendary Institute, Goodfellas Barbershop, J.N.P., and Sims Strategic Mentoring.

“No matter what community you come from, we all have the basic needs of safety, unity and non-violence in our community so it’s a universal message,” Empower My Environment, President, Charles Benson said.

To support their case and dispel the myth that the city was hazardous, residents banded together and walked from Arkansas Baptist College to the Arkansas State Capitol.

“Everyone needs to see us all coming together. No separation. We’re all on the same mission to better Little Rock, Arkansas,” Pettus said.

Their goal is to make sure that young people remember that there are positive things they can do instead of letting themselves be influenced negatively.

“We’re all working together to help our youth be empowered, be able to have skills, be able to have the mindset to do those positive things that they need to do,” LR Department of Community Programs, Community Violence Intervention Program, Manager, Marcus Montgomery said.

Even though Little Rock was the focal point of the trek, the message is universal.
Supporters of the cause came out in force from all throughout Central Arkansas, with North Little Rock’s own Officer Tommy Norman among them.

“Without neighborhood and communities this city and this state won’t thrive,” Norman said. “This is not my state, this is our state. Tomorrow is not promised…We’ve got to stop losing so many young people to gun violence. And love… Paece… Unity… That’s where it starts.”

“We need it today. We’re surrounded by and just overshadowed by negativity so if we bring love the world will be better,” Pettus said.

We must continue our campaign for peace! The groups have promised to hold community-building events all year round.




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