We can’t pretend it’s not happening, it hurts us all. The recent violence in Winnipeg’s North End has left our community frustrated. Regardless of how overwhelming it can be, we must remain hopeful and steadfast in our belief that goether we can overcome this.
There have been violent assaults where indigenous women have lost their lives, stabbings, violence in schools, shootings, home invasions and more. Many of these stories have not made the media but North Enders know and feel the ripple effect. Five years ago, in 2011 it felt this way, the same year we started Meet Me at the Bell Tower. But our community was not helpless then and is not helpless now. We have to find a way to stop this violence happening in our families and on the streets. For now, we need to rally around those families and ask them what is needed in this time of grief and loss. Next, we must connect as residents and helpers to figure out our plan; how will we prevent these acts of violence? We’re gonna need everyone, so please reach out to your family and make sure they know they are loved and valued. If we can use our gifts as helpers together to make our community stronger we will overcome the violence, like we did before. Do we start a new initiative? Or direct some of our energy to something that already exists? Is our current helper workload positively affecting the community the way we want? Answering these questions is not gonna be easy, this heavy work never is. But you and I are needed to help craft the right solution; lives are literally on the line. I haven’t given up yet and neither should you — let’s get to work.