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Summer Neighborhood Outreach series brings resources to Indianapolis communities

The event offered screenings, gun safety items, domestic violence support, employment connections and public transportation resources.

INDIANAPOLIS — On Wednesday, Grassy Creek Park on the far east side became a hub for families in the community to connect with neighbors and get resources.  

It was part of the Indianapolis Office of Public Health and Safety’s "Summer Neighborhood Outreach Series," which brings resources and social services directly into neighborhoods that need them most.  

“All of it is community building, community collaboration and bringing the resources to the community,” said Lauren Rodriguez, director of Indy's Office of Public Health and Safety. 

The event offered mobile health screenings, gun safety items, domestic violence support, employment connections and public transportation resources.  

Local organizations also gave away free food boxes with fresh fruit, vegetables, snacks and drinks. Community partners barbequed meals for those who showed up. 

“It’s a very important opportunity for all of us to come together as one community to interact with one another, to get to know each other better,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett.  

RELATED: Hogsett announces grant program to improve neighborhood relationships

It was also an opportunity for the city’s peacemakers to build connections and trust with the community, especially during the summer months when the city typically sees more crime.  

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“We want to see a reduction (in crime) so that’s why we are out here trying to do these things to say, ‘Hey, there are resources,’” said Daniel Mallory, a life coach with the Office of Public Health and Safety.  

Mallory said events like this give him hope for a more peaceful summer.  

Credit: WTHR/Lauren Kostiuk

“We’re out here. We are doing the work and we are really trying to decrease what’s going on in the city. So, if this is what it takes to make some of that happen, then this is why we are out here,” he said.  

As the summer heats up, leaders are determined to keep the city safe by being more proactive than reactive.  

“We are trying to change the narrative to one of hope instead of one of complete sadness,” Rodriguez said. 

The series will run every Wednesday till June 22 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. in different locations around the city:

  • June 8: Gustafson Park, 3110 Moller Rd.  
  • June 15: Wes Montgomery Park, 3400 N Hawthorne 
  • June 22: Denver Park, 1024 Sharon Ave.  

The hope is to do another series in the fall.  

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