Two Evanston-based youth development organizations will host a forum to address community concerns about youth violence on Wednesday, Oct. 8.

“A Community Conversation on Empowering Youth to Prevent Violence” will be held at 7 p.m. in the Parasol Room at the Civic Center, 2100 Ridge Ave., co-sponsored by Metropolitan Family Services Evanston/Skokie Valley Center and Youth Organizations Umbrella.

Panelists include:

  • Heather Flett, program manager for Metropolitan Family Services and creator of Take Back the Halls: Ending Violence in Relationships and Schools.
  • Kevin L. Brown, community services manager for the Evanston Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department
  • Melody Rose, clinical coordinator for Y.O.U.
  • (Sally) Craige Christensen, violence prevention and outreach coordinator for the YWCA Evanston/North Shore.

The session will be moderated by Steve Bynum, senior producer for Worldview on WBEZ radio.

“We have gathered a distinguished panel to help explore the problem of gun and sexual violence in our community, identify risk factors for youth violence, and identify strategies and resources to address the problem and to empower youth,” said Raquel Rodriguez, community development director, Metropolitan Family Services. 

Seth Green, Y.O.U. executive director, said, “We invite parents, education professionals, other agencies that serve our young people – in short – all those who want to talk about the ways we can address this issue — to join us.” 

Two free CEUs will be offered for counselors, social workers and certified domestic violence professionals. Preregistration is available online.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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