AmeriHealth Caritas District of Columbia, the top-rated Medicaid plan in the city, attempted Friday to shed light on violence in the District by hosting the second installment of its “Best Me: The Blunt Truth on Violence and Prevention” summer series.

The event took place from 10:30 a.m. to noon at Brookland Middle School in northeast D.C.

In partnership with Trident House International, FOuR Youth and The Blunt Truth Foundation, the series presents an integrated violence prevention program, combining music, video skits, and storytelling to engage youth and foster behavioral changes.

The program included topics for discussion such as substance abuse, respect/morals, bullying, safe sex, and domestic violence.

“For too many young people across this country, exposure to violence is an inescapable part of growing up,” said DJ Young Music, who participated in the event. “Some are directly involved as victims or perpetrators. Others carry around the memory of a shooting or fight they witnessed firsthand. Many more are affected by the stories they hear at school or from having known a classmate who has been killed. While the levels of exposure to violence may vary, the resulting fear and anxiety can be traumatic, long lasting and pervasive. The earlier we can prevent violence — including building up young people’s families and communities — the more effective we will be.”

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WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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