From June 5-7, 2015 the Yonkers African American Heritage Committee organized the very first celebration of Juneteenth in the City of Yonkers. YMCA Project SNUG saw it as an opportunity to highlight the concerns of violence within the Black community.
Project SNUG participated throughout the weekend at the Flag Raising (its director prayed and sang the Black National Anthem), the History of African American Music, the Sunday morning worship service, the parade, and the festival.
Since there would be a parade, Project SNUG used it as a time to message. About 40 people marched wearing t-shirts that said, “Don’t shoot. I want to grow up.” These are words often used by many of the Cure Violence programs around the country to remind people of our most vulnerable population, youth.
The parade ended with the Juneteenth festival where Project SNUG hosted a bouncy castle and Kid’s Korner for the hundreds of children that were there. Special thanks to Ben Tobias who helped run the Kids Korner with John Thompson.
“Every opportunity we can take to tell people to stop shooting is a must,” according to the YMCA Project SNUG Director John Thompson.