Young people march to end gun violence on National Day of Social Change

FLINT (WJRT) (07/17/19) - A local group is taking a stand by holding a rally to protect youth against gun violence.

"It's important to help stop gun violence because people are going to shoot each other. Everybody is made for a purpose and that's why they are supposed to live for a purpose," said 10-year-old activist Emmanuel Ayodele.

He seems wise beyond his years about an issue no 10-year-old should have to learn.

"We are here to let our children know that they can be young activists," Freedom School Executive Director Jacquinne Reynolds said.

She said that activism starts today.

"Not only make a difference in themselves, their families the community, the world. That is our message, that you can make a difference," Reynolds said.

About 80 Freedom School children marched through downtown Flint, Wednesday. They are using their young voices, hoping to make a difference in the fight against gun violence in their communities.

"Why are you marching? Why is that important? Because a lot of people have been killed by guns and they want that to stop," 9-year-old activist Jayla Young said.

Reynolds said the goal is to let children know that even at a young age they can be part of the change needed to make their communities safe.

"We want our children to know that they have the freedom to express themselves. What I find is as an educator is that children often feel stifled, we are always telling them to sit down and be quiet. But Freedom school is about tuning into that freedom that they have and let them express who they are in the way that they want to express themselves," Reynolds said.