stop the violence thmbBermuda College students and employees wore red on Wednesday as part of Spirit Week activities to protest violence – specifically gang violence – in the community, and to hear from community activists how to counteract it.

 stop the violence listening Minister Weeks wide

Recognising the Red: Bermuda College Hosts Anti-Violence Event

Bermuda College students and employees wore red on Wednesday as part of Spirit Week activities to protest violence – specifically gang violence – in the community, and to hear from community activists how to counteract it.
Minister WeeksMinister of Social Development & Sports, the Hon. Michael Weeks, in attendance to support the initiative, spoke from the heart in his capacity as a Government minister, and as a father. He said active involvement in sports clubs and sports teams provides an effective outlet for pent-up emotion and frustration for young people. It also provides a sense of achievement, teaches discipline and produces positive role models.
The event was spearheaded by “MenSpeak”, a College Registered Student Organisation (RSO) for males coordinated by Mr. Lyndon Jackson. MenSpeak member, and Arts & Science student, Elijah Lowe introduced Desmond Crockwell, anti-gang violence crusader and a BC alumnus, who said that the red colours worn signified bloodshed, unconditional love, and a symbol to ‘stop the violence’. He challenged students to stay in school.
“We don’t have enough positive role models,” he said. And, in an emotional appeal, referencing the recent arrest of his two sons, he stated, “…they made foolish choices. They’ll be spending 4 years in prison. Life is no joke. You get out of it what you put into it. It’s important to live a wholesome, clean life and to respect yourself. The prisons are full of young, black men; the street corners are full of young, black men. Value the role that Bermuda College is playing in your lives for the positive; use it to go overseas to school, or to begin your career here at home.”
stop the violence advice“Many of you went to school with a lot of (gang violence victims); you know them. Stay in school. You will become a role model to them. Stick at it. Stick to it. Recognise the red.”
stop the violence MENSPEAK introduces2Caleb Roberts, another Bermuda College art student explained how the gang culture had been a part of his life at one time, but that he had been deeply impacted by the gang-related stabbing death of a 15 year-old fellow student while he was living in England. He said he now found his expression through art.
Founder of Breaking the Silence, Antonio Belvedere, another BC alumnus, spoke of three candlelight vigils held to commemorate those lost to gang violence. He intends to start a charity dedicated to giving families closure, particularly to the children left behind. He, too, shared his story of a good friend, who as an innocent bystander, tragically lost his life in gang-related shooting.
stop the violence Antoniojpg“Things are getting worse. Things are getting more reckless. If you know guys that are doing a pack, speak up! Stay positive, stay in school. You’re getting an education at Bermuda College. I left with a diploma, not an associate degree, but I still became an executive chef. You can do it!”
The event concluded with a minute of silence held to honour the memory of the victims of violence.

stop the violence speakersstop the violence MENSPEAK introduces






stop the violence listening