Over the last four weeks, WWNO has brought listeners our series "This Is Why It Matters" - stories about people our community has lost to gun violence.
Students at George Washington Carver High School worked with WWNO education reporter Jess Clark and radio producer Eve Abrams over several months to produce this series. Each student producer has lost someone close to them. That's not unusual at Carver, or any school in New Orleans. Research shows about half the city's youth have lost someone to homicide.
In participating in the project, one of the most important things students discovered is that it helps to talk about what they're going through, and who they're losing.
"It helps a lot," Carver junior Kennis Fairley said. "I didn't know until I did it, but it helps a lot."
The students hope this series brings listeners a deeper understanding of what young people throughout this city experience on a daily basis. Carver junior Marneisha Gilmore says already this school year, three Carver students have been shot and killed.
"We go through a lot of things as teenagers, but we don't talk about it, and people don't realize," she said.
Most importantly, the students say they hope these stories bring change.
"I hope I can be that voice, so people can think twice before they do something," Carver junior Jacorey Warner said.
This series was produced with support from Images and Voices of Hope and Do Good NOLA.
Entergy Corporation supports WWNO's education reporting.