On Wednesday 12/08/2010 I attended Circle of Brothers Town Hall Meeting in Harlem sponsored by Circle of Brothers and Street Corner Resources. The meeting took place in the lunchroom cafeteria of P.S. 175 on West 134th Street. When I walked in I was a little hunger so I made my way to the refreshments and took a seat up front.

Over the next two hours a gentlemen named Abdul-Kareem Muhammad would invite several speakers to address an audience of approximately 60 African-American males about various economic and socio-political issues affecting the Harlem community.

Lamar Thornton Founder and Chairman of “New Breed Life Arts” spoke about many things including teaching young kids the importance of saving their money and providing financial literacy workshops for community youth. Mr. Thornton is a Master of the Martial Arts and uses his expertise to teach life skills to community youth.

Mr. Chet Whye Executive Director of “HARLEM4 Center for CHANGE” spoke about various topics including having a greater selection of affordable healthy food options in Harlem. He emphasized making healthy food choices and making adjustments to our cultural mind set as it pertains to how we view food consumption.

Dedric Hammond aka Beloved is a Youth Advocate and Violence Reduction Specialist, who once was known on the streets as “Bad News” Now he is known community wide as “Beloved”. He spoke about his past life of negative behavior, but now he works to mediate conflicts between community youth and bridge generational gaps between the young and the mature. He’s is only 32 years old but speaks words and expresses ideas beyond his years.

I asked the Brothers who remained after the meeting to gather for the below pic.  The gentleman in red in the front row is my man “Beloved.” I enjoyed this meeting and look forward to the next one.