Identifying, helping, and supporting survivors of community violence…

Children living in areas where there are high levels of violence exposure may often feel that they are caught in a cycle of violence. Early exposure to an array of traumatic events such as shootings, gang activity, and death can lead to a range of social, emotional, behavioral, and cognitive problems. It is important that individuals working with these youth develop the skills to identify the signs that youth are struggling with trauma and the best ways that they can provide support.

Lessons in the Cycle

Gained ‘bout 30 lbs when he died
We all just wanted to fit in, no role models, no one who’ll listen
Hard to see the lessons in the cycle of retaliation
Made it to high school, the next step was that gangbangin’
Seen a boy die right before our eyes, well yeah I cried but still I rise
A change of scenery might’ve encouraged me to make it out
We all just wanna fit in, that decision cost Sergio his life
Shoulda took a break that day, steered away from the fights

Ignored my fears to show out for peers
Trapped in a cell, made my body strong and my spirit as well
Fist fights turned to gun shots
5 went off & lil bro caught one,
Bullet FRYING his FLESH from a .25 cal gun
Now I’ve seen it all
Sergio would’ve been in college y’all
Had to change my fate, my route,
My mentors helped pull me out.
it takes a village, yes no doubt.
Now I’m a leader from the North to out South.

- Lukman Muhammed




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