Citing the existence of "a generation of de facto orphans now drowning in their own blood," the Ten Point Coalition, a church-based anti-crime network based in Boston, is expanding its program to a national level. "We must mobilize in defense of our own future," Ten Point co-founder Rev. Eugene Rivers said.
The Ten Point Coalition was started five years ago by pastors in the Boston area as a response to the crisis of violence in the African-American and Latino communities. Based on getting churches involved in the lives of young people through mentoring and other programs, the coalition is credited with contributing to Bostons 39 percent decrease in homicides since 1995.
Among the coalitions "ten points" for confronting violence among African-American and Latino youth are "Adopt-a-Gang" proposals for churches, the establishment of inner-city churches as sanctuaries for at-risk youth on weekend nights, and the commissioning of young people to do street-level evangelism with youth involved in drug trafficking.
The National Ten Point Leadership Foundation, as the newly expanded network is known, is launching the "Operation 2006" campaign with the hope of mobilizing 1,000 churches in 40 of the nations most dangerous neighborhoods.