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Life in the Village

Life is Hard

13 year old girl on 6/13/2008

Life is hard here in the hood;

Losing loved ones to things that is no good;

Young kids losing they minds to crack;

Always wondering if they sense will ever come back.

Brother and friend teaming and fighting each other;

Children with no father figure;

Instead they learn how to pull a trigger.

Homeless kids with no meal;

So they eat the food they steal;

Corner full of thugs;

Instead of selling drugs, they need to show love.

Young men treat young ladies like nothing;

Women have unprotected sex with or without getting paid;

But they be looking stupid when they get the AIDS.

Single mothers working hard;

They keep their head up looking to the Lord;

They will tell you - Life is hard.

Background Check on My Hood

The Third Ward is what they call it, but my hood is Prichard, Alabama. The Third is best known as Death Valley because death and shooting is the only thing you see out here.

When I was growing up as a kid it wasn't any fun. You hardly could go outside without getting robbed. It was nothing to play with cause people would steal and even kill folks.

My brother got killed out here in the hood trying to make money the ungodly way. I didn't understand back then cause I was just four when he died. But now I see the hood ain't nothing to play with cause some people will die in this hood.

The hood did not make me and it surely won't break me neither. I was born and raised in this hood, but I ain't going to die here. It will destroy you if you let it. But me I'm a fighter and I am not giving up because I believe in Christ.

Growing Up Around Death

17 year old male

Growing up in Alabama Village was hard because I was seeing guns, dope, drug dealers and other bad things.

Five years ago my grandma died. Last year my grandpa died. A few months later my mama died. Two months later my sister got hit. Her baby died. The other night a man got shot in front of my house and he died.

My family thought I would be the next to die or get locked up but I came to a place called Light of the Village. And over time I found Christ and heard the he had also died. But he died for me. Jesus came into my heart and changed my heart.

Today I am a Christian and my family looks up to me.

Light of the Village

Dacino, age 18 - May 2010

Light of the Village changed my life in so many ways. First and most important of all they gave me Christ. They helped me to follow the Lord and better my life. They gave me a place where I can stay out of trouble. They gave me a place where I know I am loved. I have a mother and father that will help me when I need help.

Light of the Village is more than a school. It is like home.

They provided me with an apartment where I can go live a normal life and work at a good job. Without the ministry, I do not know where I would be.

Light of the Village means so much to me. If they were not here, I do not know where I would be.

I thank the Lord for the Light of the Village.

My Life

17 year old male

When I was young growing up in Alabama Village, things were terrible. People were shooting and getting shot. Drugs were all around me. I used to steal, tried to sell drugs and carried a 9mm pistol.

Change came when the Light of the Village shared the Word of God and Jesus Christ with me. That changed me alot. I remember how Jesus said, "Go and make disciples." And I liked that.

My life was terrible, but now six years later, Jesus has changed me and my life is good now. And my future looks bright.

In My Hood

21 year old male

In my hood, you need a gun or someone is going to gun you down. So sometime I pray because I don't want to get caught up. I don't care how thug you think you is. If you get locked up, your mamma is going to hurt and then you will hurt.

I have done some wrong things in my life but til this day I still repent cause I want to go to heaven. I love to play with my little boy and pinch his cheek and grab his little feet.

I pray he don't die in these streets.

My Future

15 year old male

My future is like a life without a soul,

My future is like a boy stuck in a hole;

My future is like a fish with no sea,

My future is like honey with no bee;

My future is like Earth with no light,

My future is like left with no right;

My future is like a child that lives in shame,

My future is like a person with no brain;

My future, with God, can be saved,

My future, with God, can be changed.

What I have Gone Through

16 year old male

What I have gone through in Alabama Village. I seen people killed and lots of bad things. I used to be one of those people, even though I was just a kid. But as a kid I looked up to people doing that stuff. Most of our own families were doing drugs and other bad things.

Then I met the people at Light of the Village. The building was an old crack house and they was building it up. They shared Jesus with me and they shared the love of Christ with the entire neighborhood.

Now five years later, our lives are better because of their love and more important, Jesus' love for us and our neighborhood.

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