WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) – The first annual Anti-violence Awareness Day Community Cookout hosted by Roc Wit Me will take place Saturday at noon.
The event is also in partnership with Moms-N-Mourning.
Roc With Me will hold its inaugural event on South 9th Street between Castle Street and Robert Strange Park.
The charity organization is located in Brooklyn New York, but the recent violence in Wilmington hits close to home for founder and CEO Scottie Paige — because it is home.
“This is to bring awareness to some of the issues that we struggle with in our community such as senseless violence, which is going on a lot here in Wilmington,” he said. “This is my home, you know, and I was taught when I was young that we never forget about where we come from and this is my home. And I know it’s a lot of killings, so I just wanted to be a part of the healing process of that.”
There will be food, music and guest speakers to raise awareness around violence in the community and to start the healing process together.
“When I was coming up they said ‘It takes a village to raise our families and our kids, so Roc Wit Me is just trying to put the village back together one brick at a time,’” Paige said.
Paige himself struggled with addiction and was even wrongfully charged of murder in 1999, facing the death penalty. He was eventually exonerated and is now clean. He is now in the business of what he calls “hope dealing”.
“We [Roc Wit Me] promote healthy lifestyles, basically with substance abuse, mental health, senseless violence, pre-and-post-incarceration,” he said about the work his charitable organization does.
Moms-N-Mourning Vice President Yolanda Hayes’ son was murdered almost three years ago and said that coming together is more important now than ever.
“These last couple of, you know, weeks, months, and everything like that we’ve seen — even after my son’s murder — we’ve seen just so much violence,” she said.
Hayes is also an ambassador with Roc Wit Me.
The event will be from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. South 9th Street between Castle Street and Robert Strange Park.
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