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  • Writer's pictureRenee DeBoard Lucas

Peace for DC Resource Fair

I reached out to Peace for DC because of the overlap in our missions. Peace for DC is largely focused on gun violence prevention and their leading program ‘The DC Peace Academy’ is incredible. It partners with community-based organizations to train community violence intervention workers in professional and personal skills that help interrupt the cycle of violence. I sent a ‘cold email’ introducing myself and TRUE to Peace for DC and they responded. We set up a brief phone call to discuss partnership opportunities and they invited me to attend an upcoming resource fair for community agencies. I didn’t want to miss this chance to meet folks at Peace for DC and to join with other community-based orgs so I cleared my schedule, dragged a folding table out of the basement, bought some candy at Walgreens so people would talk to me, and went to the fair. 

I didn’t know anyone at the fair and most of the orgs seemingly had longer-standing relationships with Peace for DC than the four or five days TRUE had. However, my candy did the trick and I met everyone at the fair. Every person and org there is doing incredible work in DC. Business cards were exchanged and follow up meetings have been happening. However, the interaction I appreciated the most were with two community members who asked me ‘Why should I send the kids in my neighborhood to you? What will TRUE do to support them? What is your success rate?’ I acknowledged our shortcomings and took it as a learning opportunity. Both of these people agreed to meet with me so I could pick their brains on how to best reach the kids they care so much about.

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