Lexington’s Summer Youth Program participants recognized this week

WEKU | By Stu Johnson

Lexington city officials and various non-profit agencies are continuing to work on reducing youth violence. One such long-standing effort is found in the Summer Youth Program.

About 40 teenagers, ranging in age from 13 to 17, participated in the Summer Youth Program. Most of them have been impacted by gun violence in one form or another. One Lexington Director Devine Carama said retention has been good over the eight weeks. He said it can help to lessen violent acts.

“Obviously outward facing you can look at the numbers starting to trickle down, to come down. But, for us, it’s the growth we’ve seen in the individual young people that have been coming here for the last three years,” said Carama.

It’s been a mixture of counseling and educational sessions along with other fun activities.

Summer Youth Program Director Tania Walker said new this summer were weekly therapeutic counseling sessions.

“You can have fun in life, but you have to make sure you do your healing too. So, we did a lot of that every Tuesday, this summer and it went great. It taught them about coping skills, life skills, and effective communication. Just really how to understand what you are going through and how to process it and not run from it. So, that was a great thing,” said Walker.

This summer’s program is wrapping up this week. Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton participated in the closing awards and achievements program.

WEKU is working hard to be a leading source for public service, fact-based journalism. Monthly sustaining donors are the top source of funding for this growing nonprofit news organization. Please join others in your community who support WEKU by making your donation

Photo by Stu Johnson.

Republished with permission.