North Dallas Truce Project
Organized by: Ladarris Fannin
“Making peace sounds like a dream…but all dreams have to start somewhere. I want to start it in the place I know the best, the one that is closest to my heart. North Dallas.” Ladarris Fannin
Gang initiated violence in the north Dallas area, the epicenter of which is at the cross section of Audelia and Forest, is devastating the community. Several young men have been murdered, and more have lost precious time in their lives to incarceration. Experts are guessing at the cause or causes. An answer needs to be found quickly before more lives are lost.
Working from the inside out. Expert analysis and police investigations are making headway toward stopping North Dallas violence, but more much must be done. LaDarris Fannin, former north Dallas gang member and current college student, plans to relocate back to Dallas and start ending the violence that his tearing apart his community.
“I grew up on the streets of North Dallas. I’ve been in a gang. I still know all the people who are out there working the streets and I know the kids who have died. I want to start people talking to each other, establish communication lines between gangs, and get an agreement to stop the violence. I truly believe it is possible. Everyone is fed up, but no one knows where to start. I believe it starts with me.”
LaDarris holds unique a position because he comfortably lives in two worlds. He grew up the North Dallas neighboroods surrounded by and involved in crime, gangs, drugs and violence. He also works currently in the realm of youth development and the arts. He has worked for the past 5 summers with Big Thought’s Creative Solutions, a job training and life skills program for teens on probation with the Dallas County Juvenile Department. He began as a participant, on probation for robbery at age 13, and was quickly identified as a leader and mentor. After graduating from Berkner High School, he got a scholarship to attend college, the first in his family to ever attend.
Once the first $5000 of the goal has been met, LaDarris will focus his non-study hours to begin the research, connection making, and conversations necessary to establish a truce and pact to end the violence. He will dedicate 25 hours a week for a year. The money will serve as a temporary salary for the part time work. He will continue to pursue his college degree at Mountain View College.
- Start with one-on-one conversations with gang members
- Get small groups of 3-4 teens and young adults to agree to meet and talk
- Work in partnership with:
- Dallas Advocacy Center (Teen mentor Fred Hutchins)
- Dallas Police (Officer Smiley)
- Big Thought (Creative Solutions Project Director Lisa Schmidt and Project Manager
- ArtLoveMagic (Events Coordinator Erika Krivda)
- Journeyman Ink (Founder Will Richey)