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Indy group hopes to turn the tide on east side violence

Posted: 6:01 PM, Sep 05, 2018
Updated: 2018-09-05 22:42:02-04

INDIANAPOLIS -- A local organization is issuing a call to community members on Indianapolis’ far east side to help them turn the tide of deadly violence in the city.

The Ross Foundation was one of six groups that received part of a $60,000 grant from Mayor Joe Hogsett’s office to help with their efforts.

The city of Indianapolis is on track to break another homicide record in 2018, and Derris Ross, the founder of The Ross Foundation, is calling on his far east side community to get on board and fight back.

READ | Indy awards $300K in violence reduction grants to six grass-roots organizations

“Our young people are dying young and younger every year, every week, every month and until our community comes together and is unified we will never see those types of situations decline,” said Ross. “We need the community more than ever right now.”

The grant from the city will help fund The Ross Foundation’s crime prevention program called BASICS which stands for “building alternative solutions in our community.”

BASICS is a three-part program which includes elements of community engagement, individual intervention and support.

“The crime in these poverty neighborhoods will only start to decline when our neighborhood takes ownership to step up and do something about it,” said Ross.

Ross hopes to use the grant money to help people in the program with transportation and financial troubles and to hire five to eight community advocates to work with the organization as they complete their crime prevention program.

But Ross says they can’t do it alone. They need the community support, as well as the funds, to help them succeed.

“If you really want to see change in your community, the beautification of your neighborhood, we want you guys to come together to show the unity, so we can get this area on the right track,” said Ross. “We want the community to get involved with this program voluntarily, even if it’s just donating an hour of your time a week – we could use you.”

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