Young local activists making a difference in South Bend

ABC 57 News caught up with three young local activists trying to make a change in South Bend.

Shawn Jacks: 24

Twenty-four-year-old Shawn Jacks wants to replace violent chatter with positivity, in a new initiative he calls Be Great.

“I want to effect a cultural change. The constant thought we want to put in people’s heads is how to be a better person or to think about being a better person than you were the day before. Our goal is to promote advocacy and service in all the urban communities,” said Jacks.

Nnenia Okereke: 22

Twenty-two-year-old Nnenia Okereke helped organized July’s Black Lives Matter rally downtown. She’s organizing another rally Saturday, August 20th at 9 p.m. at the St. Joseph County Courthouse downtown.

“That was one of the most pivotal moments of my life (July's rally.) It helped me realize that there’s people out here who care, there’s people out here who want to hear our message... Black dollars matter as well and they need to be reinvested. When it comes to putting tax dollars back into the community, that’s where the discrimination starts,” said Okereke.

Shane Inez: 17

Seventeen-year-old Shane Inez is beginning his senior year at Riley High school. He leads the local chapter of Young Americans for Freedom.

“What we’d like to do is inspire young people to be politically active in their community. We wanted to start at Clay High School with establishing the first gender neutral rest room in Michiana. I live here. I work here. I grew up here. This is home, not just South Bend, Indiana. So I feel like it’s a duty of mine to try to shape our environment,” said Inez.

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