At 13, Shawn Harrison knew he needed help.
He was fighting at school, experimenting with drugs and had seen people shot and stabbed. Still, he would drag himself out of bed on weekends to attend a young men's mentoring program at his church.
"I would do all this in school, and yet, for some reason, I was still drawn to the program," said Harrison, 23. "I would wake up Saturday and go in there and they'd say, ‘Hey, how you doing?' ... and I would tell them what happened."
Harrison credits the program, Rites of Passage, for helping him make it through that part of his life. A member of the first class, he is among more than 80 people who have attended the program since it began in 2000.
This week, the three-year program for black teens, offered through the People's Community Baptist Church in Silver Spring, celebrates its 10th anniversary. It was created to instill long-range values in its participants, said program Cofounder Norman Jones.
More at the link provided.