City councilman holds Men's Day to help reduce youth violence - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

City councilman holds Men's Day to help reduce youth violence


New Orleans, LA -- The violent crime that plaques the New Orleans metro area has City Council member, James Gray worried about saving the younger generation.

It's just wrong how these young kids, just killing people for no reason," says attendee, Bobby Morgan.

"I've coached kids for 35 years in track and field generally poor inner city kids and none of my kids to date have been killed or none of them are in jail," says New Orleans City Council Member, James Gray.

He's on a mission to save them.

Today, the councilman invited more than 150 men and young boys to Joe W. Brown park for the first men's day.

The morning was spent with planning meetings and sports clinics designed to connect coaches, teachers, interested parents and community members with opportunities to mentor young people in a variety of sports and other activities.

Joe W. Brown Park has been rebuilt with an indoor heated pool, a gym designed for basketball and classrooms for music, debate, chess and more.

Gray invited Karate Grand Master Eric O' Neal to share the basics of martial arts with the children.

"Young boys look for excitement, now you can give them excitement in competition on the football field," says O'Neal. "If you don't give it to them there they're going to go find it on the streets."

Gray wants to expand across the metro area with football baseball and other sports.

"He's already successfully convinced me to have a program here at Joe Brown Park," says O'Neal.

 "We even had a volunteer today that's going to run a chess team, but we're starting right now doing things with the kids," says Gray. "Not just through the summer it's going to be a forever thing."

New Orleans Saints Wide Receiver, Joe Morgan also took part in Men's day.

He hosted a football clinic and talked about staying in school and becoming an NFL athlete.

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