In late December, I wrote a passionate blog following the road rage shooting death of 3-year-old Acen King titled “Two Toddlers. Two Lives. Too Much.” In a way, it was a challenge to myself, our newsroom, and the community to step up and do something about the violence that ended the lives of two toddlers as 2016 came to a close.
The result was Sunday’s roll-out of the Victory Over Violence campaign.
The announcement was the culmination of weeks of meetings, conversations, debates, and brainstorm sessions. We had multiple focus groups involving station employees, community leaders, non-profit directors, business executives, police officers, and pastors. Our goal was to identify community needs and determine how we could all work together to meet those needs.
We were fortunate enough to meet some great partners along to way who helped develop our Victory Over Violence game plan. While we’re pretty good at distributing information and promoting events, we admittedly don’t know anything about stopping violence. We found some exceptional leaders who helped combat Little Rock’s crime crisis in the mid-90s to lend their expertise and guide our efforts.
Together, I think we can do some pretty big things.
On Sunday, KARK and Fox16 launched a comprehensive content initiative, promotional campaign, and community event schedule. Some things we try will work well. Others might not. We know we’ll have to adapt, change, and evolve.
We’re ready for the challenge.
It’s an empty feeling when you watch children get shot and killed in the streets of your city and know you can’t do anything to stop it. Maybe we can’t stop it — but we’ll damn sure try.