It’s a program that keeps teens on the streets, but instead of getting in trouble, they’re painting homes, cutting grass, and beautifying areas.
One pastor says the “Every Man For Every Man” revitalization project is the answer to reducing crime in Memphis and getting kids to succeed.
Jebori Thomas, 18, went through the program last year. He already has his own lawn care business and is headed to Southwest Community College.
He says he owes much of his success to the project. He jumped at the chance to be a part of it last year. This year he’s helped organize the young men and get them ready for work.
“The involvement in the program has really inspired me to go harder, to work hard and do what i do, daily,” says Thomas.
He says painting and roofing were some of his favorite jobs in the program and he’s proud to be a part of beautifying the Bluff City.
Pastor Torrie Wilson directs the project and says there is a twofold benefit. The youth are put to work and with the help of donations they are able to pay the young men and give them direction in their lives.
“We have pockets of young men and young women all over the Memphis community idle during working hours,” he says. “If you have idleness during working hours you have poverty. If you have poverty, you have crime and you have frustration.”