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“Even though we are having a crisis of violence, we have good and dedicated people working to help solve it.” – James, Austin community

Thank you to all who joined Metropolitan for Mpower the Night, a program exploring the realities of violence prevention and the reasons to feel hopeful about peace in Chicago.

View the full program:

Our most successful Mpower the Night yet benefits Metropolitan Family Services and the more than 95,000 children and families we serve through violence prevention and critical wrap-around support in education, economic stability, emotional wellness, and empowerment.

We welcomed Michael G. O’Grady, Chairman, President and CEO of Northern Trust, to accept our Legacy Award on behalf of Northern Trust. We’re pleased to honor not only our long-standing partnership, which began with Northern Trust’s founding 133 years ago, but also our shared legacy of community investment.

In two open and candid conversations moderated by ABC 7 Chicago’s Samantha Chatman, members of rival street organizations – James and Stro in Austin, and Kendall and Alvin in Roseland – spoke about the challenges they face in establishing peace, their perspectives on what it takes to keep the peace, and what motivates them to keep going.

“It’s my kids and the future and the youth,” Alvin shared, about his own motivation. “The world is going to change and evolve around the youth. We gotta make the world better for the youth, we gotta show them to love each other.”

Next, Samantha spoke with leaders of city-wide street outreach initiatives – Vaughn Bryant and Bo Deal of Metropolitan Peace Initiatives, and Jalon Arthur of Chicago CRED – about what they learned from the previous conversations.

For Vaughn, it wasn’t the differences between the neighborhoods that struck him, but the similarities. “The key to me is that from a systemic perspective, the history of systemic oppression impacts both sides of the city, and those are going to manifest themselves in similar ways,” he said. “We have to get to those root causes to make a difference.”

Programs like Metropolitan Peace Initiatives and Chicago CRED work to address the root causes of violence. As we heard throughout the program, solutions will take time and investment, but we can build lasting peace in Chicago, together.

If you felt inspired by the conversations you heard at Mpower the Night, consider a contribution to help us Mpower every night: https://www.metrofamily.org/Mpower

HOST COMMITTEE

  • Scott Swanson, Chair
    PNC Bank President, IL 
  • Erik Barefield
  • Erica Borggren
  • Erica Canzona
  • Merle Goldblatt Cohen
  • Marcus Cooper
  • Tanya Davis
  • Craig Esko
  • Graham Gerst
  • Kristine Givens
  • Amanda Graveline
  • Stephen M. Griesemer
  • Christy Harris
  • Roger Hochschild
  • Tony Hunter
  • Ashley Duchossois Joyce
  • John L. MacCarthy
  • Marilyn Marchetti
  • Aleck Matambo
  • John V.N. McClure
  • Kate Melman
  • Martha Melman
  • Toyin Ogun
  • Emily Ory
  • Chip Owen
  • Brian Paladie
  • Diana Palomar
  • Virginia L. Pillman
  • Richard Price
  • Dan Rahill
  • Barbara Rapp
  • Bryan Rozum
  • Sophia Ruffolo
  • Kecia Steelman
  • David Tropp
  • Michael Vardas
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