Local News

Foxx visits Fayetteville State University to promote 'My Brother's Keeper'

Posted January 19, 2016 4:40 p.m. EST
Updated January 20, 2016 6:44 a.m. EST

— My Brother's Keeper is an initiative started by President Barack Obama that encourages communities to combine their resources to help change the lives of young men of color in a very positive way.

United States Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx is traveling across the country on behalf of the President to get the program started in as many communities as possible. So far 200 communities in 49 state have joined.

Foxx and Congressman David Price met privately with community leaders Tuesday morning for about an hour.

Following the meeting, the pair took questions at a public forum. The former Charlotte Mayor said turning the lives of disadvantaged young men around has economic benefits for the entire country.

“There are lots of example of successful African-American men and women who survived almost insurmountable odds to be successful,” Foxx said. “What we want young people to do is to help us make that not insurmountable, but to make that the norm, not the exception.”

Foxx said many communities have several programs in place targeting disadvantaged youth. He said My Brother’s Keeper is an effort to pool those resources into one organized effort to make a real difference in the lives of young people.

"Many of them come from the same backgrounds of students who don't succeed," said Fayetteville State University Chancellor, Dr. James Anderson. "We want them to be the next wave of young leaders to carry this baton forward and to really make a commitment themselves to helping younger peers."

Foxx told the crowd that the project is a long-term commitment, and that it starts with local communities pulling their resources to turn young lives around.

"One of the messages is that, no matter where you come from, no matter what zip code or what neighborhood, or what your family circumstances are, that you can make it if your mind is made up," Foxx said.

Spring Lake Mayor Chris Rey said his city also has joined the initiative. Fayetteville Mayor Nat Robertson told WRAL News that the city wants to be a part of the program, but they’re evaluating how much it will cost.