KICDRUM Kids in Crisis RichmondKids are in crisis in the inner cities of America. Over the last year I’ve seen firsthand the effects of violence, broken lives, and families torn apart. Two Saturday’s ago in a housing project just across the street from one of the middle schools where we have our KICDRUM program, two children, 11 and 13, were shot whilst playing outside. Fortunately they were not killed, but they now have to live with the trauma of that experience and the fear of not feeling safe outside of their homes. Surprisingly only one area news station covered this event in much detail, perhaps because these occurrence are becoming way to common. The children’s mother organized a rally and spoke to the news station with tears in her eyes, saying that she only turned around  for just a minute when it happen. Every mother, where ever she lives, wants her children to be able to grow up safe, healthy and happy!

In KICDRUM this week we talked about relationships and one of the relationships that we discussed was relationship to your community. My students were very honest about how they felt angry, fearful and helpless. When discussing the shooting, one of the female students said, “that could have been me”, another student said that last year one of her friends was shot and killed in the community. I can only imagine what it must be like for a sixth grader to carry the heavy burden of knowing that at any moment the rhythms of life can change so dramatically. Kids in Crisis, KICDRUM program, addresses the issues of child trauma and PTSD.  Students are encouraged to share their feelings and discover resiliency in the face of adversity. A lot of people have a lot of opinions about how to fix the situation but I feel we need champions and leaders. I am so privileged that I get to spend time with champions and leaders every day, playing drums together, and talking about life.