CU Community works with Illinois Public Media to Address Gun Violence

Illinois Public Media Launched a new quarterly series on breaking the cycle of trauma and gun violence in the Champaign-Urbana Community. 

They hosted an event at Pour Bros. Craft Taproom in downtown Champaign, “It Takes A Village: What C-U Is Doing To Combat Gun Violence?”. This was the first of their many events for the new series called “News, Brews & Beats.” 

Each quarter, News, Brews & Beatz will focus on a different aspect of the gun violence crisis going on in the community, locally and nationally. This week, they really narrowed in on the stigma against mental health in regards to gun violence in youth and in adults and how as a community we can contribute to the conversation of mental health in regards to decreasing the likelihood of gun violence in the Champaign-Urbana community. 

“Some things are deeper than just bad people and bad things,” said Reginald Hardwick, Professor of Social Work at Illinois State University. 

The panel mainly focused on drawing attention to how mental health resources are lacking in the Champaign-Urbana community. 

Karen Crawford Simms, founder of the Trauma & Resilience initiative highlighted that giving empathy, and creating a community that fosters love and support is one of the most crucial points to bringing youth closer to a better upbringing and farther from gun violence. 

While the gathering was catered to informing the Champaign-Urbana community on what they can do to help, Karen Crawford Simms, founder of the Trauma & Resilience Initiative mentioned that University students have just as much of a pivotal role in the cause as any other. 

“Diversify your friend groups, diversify your courses and meet new people”, said Crawford Simms. 

Crawford Simms stated that this is one of the most pivotal ways to start the change, is to start within ourselves.