InspireNOLA Charter Schools Launches Citywide Youth Initiative

A student-led initiative focuses on decreasing gun violence across the city

New Orleans Agenda

NEW ORLEANS — InspireNOLA Charter Schools, launches NOLALove, a citywide call-to-action that advocates for our youth by providing services focused on academic excellence, mental health awareness, family wellness, and community service to transform the outcomes of today’s youth.

Recent reports suggest that youth in New Orleans are at the forefront of the current violent crime wave that has inflicted our city. NOLALove is our response to empowering our youth so that they can advocate for themselves and one another on academically, socially, and emotionally centered endeavors and can improve their livelihood inside and outside the classroom.

“While InspireNOLA is spearheading NOLALove, this is an accountability call to everyone in the city to join us in connecting and improving the lives of New Orleans youth,” said InspireNOLA CEO Jamar McKneeley. “Time and time again, we’ve seen community initiatives targeted at the youth, but what about initiatives that rally behind our youth—that gives them the power to be their own advocate. Through NOLALove, we are here to build a supportive environment while being held accountable to listen, learn and act on meeting the youths’ needs beyond the classroom and address their own needs to resolve how they might handle day-to-day life, including conflict resolution.”

NOLALove will include a comprehensive program bringing schools, community groups, and stakeholders together over a series of recurring events to promote non-violence, academic success, high expectations, and community involvement. It is unlike any other community program and serves as a bridge between the community and today’s youth.

“For me, NOLALove is a chance for us to show that when we can come together and love one another while protecting all students and giving them a chance to succeed and live a fair life,” said Fourth-Grade Student Council President at McDonogh 42, Lewis Thompson.

In order to bring the youth of the New Orleans community together, NOLALove will host a student rally for youth on October 12, 2022. 5,000 students from various schools throughout New Orleans will attend and hear from dynamic speakers including Inky Johnson, Raynell “Supa” Steward, Gregoire Tillery, Councilmembers Oliver Thomas and Freddie King, District Attorney Jason Williams and more. More details will be forthcoming regarding other events and programming.

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