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This Weekend's 'Hurting Families' Events Bringing Together Violence Victims' Relatives

police tape and vehicles
News4Jax

A local nonprofit is holding a meet-and-greet and breakfast this weekend with the mothers of high-profile violence victims. Ticket sales from the events go to support anti-crime and victim-advocacy services.

The group called Hurting Families with Children of Crime is hosting tonight’s meeting and an all-day event tomorrow at the Wyndham hotel on Southbank. Organizer Linda Dayson says it’s a chance for people affected by crime to commiserate.

“The most awesome part about it is that these mothers and families will be coming from both sides of crime," she says. "You will have mothers here whose children have been killed, and you will have mothers who have children who’ve been involved in crime.”

Dayson says featured speakers at tomorrow’s event include mothers of Florida A&M University marching band hazing victim Robert Champion and Valdosta high schooler Kendrick Johnson, whose body was found rolled inside a gym mat at school. Several Jacksonville families recently touched by crime are also expected to attend. 

She says Hurting Families is a nonprofit run completely on private donations. It runs programs for teenagers including trips to court to see the consequences of violence. The group also connects the families of crime victims and perpetrators in an effort to foster healing. 

Tickets are $10 for tonight's meet-and-greet and $60 for Saturday's event. It runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Wyndham Riverwalk at 1515 Prudential Drive.