LYNCHBURG, Va. – Parents contact us a lot at 10 News about bullying in schools. A local man is trying to stop bullying and stop violence.
Playing in the pool is a safe, fun activity giving kids in the James Crossing Apartments something to do.
"The last two years in summertime Lynchburg has been hot. When it gets hot, you have a lot of violence come up," said B.B. Shavers, with SHOPO Nation.
He's trying to keep these kids out of trouble because he knows what prison is like after spending years locked up.
"How can I help these kids not do 20 years in prison, because one thing we know whether you're a teenager or an adult guns aren't good. Gun violence is not good. The best thing we can do is make sure we always take positive initiatives to keep guns away from kids, especially teenagers," said Shavers.
"I stay to myself," said 18-year old Tray Waller, who just graduated from Heritage High School.
He's worried about his younger brothers.
"I feel like 13- and 15-year-olds they should still be watching SpongeBob to be honest," said Waller, who adds Shavers is a good mentor. "It's our community. We got to make sure our community is straight, have something for kids to do."
Shavers also talks them about bullying.
"Bullying and violence go almost hand-in-hand. Most people that get bullied turn into violent people. So by stopping the violence, stop the bullying it creates more positivity in our kids and creates positive adults," said Shavers.
Shavers has been concentrating on the Greenfield community in the last couple of years. The police data we looked through shows crime is down there.
Shavers is launching a Stop the Violence / Anti Bullying Tour this month. The first event is in Lynchburg Saturday, August 10. There's community interaction from noon to 4 p.m. and a concert that begins at 9 p.m. at Tres Mure Restaurant and Lounge.
He's going to the following cities:
- August 31: Burlington, NC
- September 7: Martinsville
- September 14: Roanoke
- September 28: Danville
This is part of an ongoing 10 News series about kids and guns. There will be multiple stories in August about how to keep your family safe. As many police departments have told us during interviews for this series, it is not about being pro-gun or anti-gun, it is about locking up guns so kids and/or criminals don't have access to guns.