Community members create Albany Chalk Talk to help reduce gun violence

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ALBANY N.Y. (NEWS10) — Some of Albany’s sidewalks are looking colorful! Community members are drawing and writing positive messages to help put an end to gun violence in places where people lost their lives in the Capital City.

“This is just the community coming together,” says Carrie Livingston, founder of Collective Souls Holding Space. CSHS is a non-profit that aims to empower the community.

The idea is called Albany Chalk Talk, the purpose is to give everyone a voice, even for the little ones. “The kids really need to be able to talk about it but not tell authority so they write about it,” says Carrie. “They write their feelings.”

Carrie is just helping with Albany Chalk Talk, her 8-year-old niece Symphonique came up with this creative idea. Carrie says Symphonique has seen violence happen right outside her window. Symphonique wasn’t able to go on camera today, but Carrie tells NEWS10 the plan is to place chalk boxes out where all the lives were taken from gun violence. “[Symphonique] wrote please stop killing us in front of her place with a broken heart and so that’s this came about,” says Carrie.

You can find the beautiful chalk drawings and kind-written words at the corner of Willett Street and Hudson Ave, that’s where 34-year-old Lamon Lanier lost his life to gun violence two weeks ago. “This block is trying to spread kindness and positivity and just saying we are a community and we’re all here together,” says Carrie.

Additionally, Carrie placed inspirational buckets full of with positive thoughts, it’s a nice pick-me-up message that anyone can grab. The chalk is only on a few streets, but Carrie hopes to extend the idea outside the Capital City. “We really want it to be Troy Chalk Talk, Schenectady Chalk Talk…” says Carrie.

No rainstorm can take away the sunshine written on the concrete! Carrie plans to refill the chalk boxes every Sunday until it snows. If you’re interested to donate, you can mail your donations to CSHS 540 Madison Ave 2F Albany NY 12208.

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