Former president Barack Obama talks with South Side training group, violence in the area during Chicago visit
Fourth Estate Staff
Chicago, IL, United States (4E) – Former president Barack Obama started his two-day visit in Chicago on Sunday and he met with young men in the area to talk about violence specifically in the South Side of the city as well as met with a training group.
Violence, jobs and skills were the main topics of Obama during the talk, a source confirmed. The meeting was created by the longtime friend of Obama, former education secretary Arne Duncan. Duncan is now a managing partner at a nonprofit organization called Emerson Collective. They work on projects to help in the crime reduction via training and finding jobs for at-risk men.
Obama started as a community organizer on the South Side three decades ago and due to the visit, he reportedly felt like he was getting back in touch with his roots. Obama spokesman Kevin Lewis shared that when Obama worked in the area as a community organizer, he grew up. Now, Obama wants to give advice and ideas to the people in the area in order to turn things around since police shootings and violence plagued South Side. Obama also asked the men he met with to share what their ideas are in order to reduce the gang and gun violence.
Lewis added, “Obama listened to the young men’s stories and shared some of the challenges that he faced growing up. He expressed that he was optimistic about their potential to positively contribute to their communities and support their families because of the services provided in the program. The young men reflected on how the program is already having a real impact on their lives.” The Obama spokesman continued to say that both the former president and Michelle Obama look forward to working with similar organizations through the Obama Foundation and My Brother’s Keeper initiative.
More on the visit, Obama met with the participants in a program called Creating Real Economic Destiny (CRED). It remained unknown how the meeting went down as it was not open to the press. The men he talked with said that they hope more programs like CRED will be created and that more investment should be made in education and life coaches in schools.
Obama is set to host a dinner for his Obama Presidential Center. She is set to spend the evening at his Kenwood home.
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