Indy peacemaker: June event will empower families to talk about gun violence

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — City leaders hope an upcoming event will empower Indy parents and families while creating a space where they can talk about gun violence and other difficult topics.

Registration is now open for ‘Community Empowerment Conference 2022: It Takes a Village’ on June 4, says Cameron Shepherd, manager of the city’s peacemaker program.

“This conference is about education through conversation and empowering through connection,” Shepherd told News 8. “It’s making families aware of what’s going on and then connecting them to resources.”

Shepherd says open communication is especially important because the number of Indianapolis youth involved in gun violence continues to rise.

“Last year, we ended the year with 15 juveniles on trial for adult homicide. This year, already in May, we’re at 14 juveniles who have lost their lives,” Shepherd said. “This is our shot at addressing our youth and saying, ‘Hey, we understand, we see what’s going on. We understand what’s going on. We want to help.’”

Shepherd says he wants as many parents, guardians, and teenagers as possible to sign up for the conference, which will be held at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.

“We want families to be there. We want the guardian to be there. We also want the teens to be there. Teens are involved in a lot of things. They see a lot of things when they leave home every day. And so we want to educate about that, what they’re going through, and then with the families, just connect them with resources.”

Register for the Community Empowerment Conference on Eventbrite.