Metro Youth Non-Profit Aims To Help Teens Avoid Crises
OKLAHOMA CITY - A metro group is out to "Stop the Violence."
The goal, group members said, is to give students support to avoid situations like the one unfolding in Edmond. Police said the investigation continues into that threat involving an Edmond North High School student.
Friday, police said a 16-year-old former student had components of explosives in his home and had been quoting other school mass casualty events.
He's receiving mental health care.
"Stop the Violence" is an Oklahoma City non-profit that has been changing the lives of metro youth for almost six years now. But recently the mission of this organization has become a lot stronger.
For Kuinten Rucker, Stop the Violence is a personal mission.
In 2010, his cousin Kruz Laviolette was shot to death after trying to break up a fight.
“And he passed away in front of his little sister and brother which was in elementary and high school,” said Rucker.
Days after that murder, Kuinten started the non-profit and since then, he and his staff of about 20 volunteers have been able to touch the lives of nearly 1,000 metro youth.
“When you're starting with the kids, you're starting with the roots, as we call them here,” said Rucker. “If we can start with them and mold them to the way we want them to be, then hopefully that impact can help change their lives.”
Kuinten said his mission is to bring awareness and resources to prevent violence among young people.
“We have open dialogues too as well, where the kids, they just get up and ask questions. Some, you will be amazed,” said Rucker.
Bullying, and how to handle it is a huge part of that.
“If someone is being mean to them, they could end up ending their life, and it's not okay,” said student, Aalizya Young.
Aalizya said she understands the feeling of losing someone because of bulling.
“I've stopped her twice, but after that, I wasn't there, and I tried to be, and I wasn't,” said Young. “I miss her a lot, and I wish she was around.”
This is Aalizya's second year in the Stop the Violence program.
“Don't let anyone ruin your day, because if you let it get to you, it will break you down,” said Young.
“Violence is everywhere. It's not just in one neighborhood. It can be in your neighborhood, it can be in mine,” said Rucker.