“Many people are afraid to fight for what they believe in and what they think is right but I’m able to do it without any fear. Often I know that my life can be be in danger. I already had to move two time because my house was intentionally shot up. I think what makes me strong now is being able to go into my neighborhood – knowing that it’s a very violent place sometimes, but I go anyway with the hopes that I can get a case solved – by going door-to-door and talking to people and helping families solve homicide cases. I encourage people to help, and there is the $20,000 reward for information on each case leading to a conviction. Sometimes I go to the drug corners and I say “Hey look this could have been you” (dead). “This could have been your mom or your brother or sister”. I say to them “wouldn’t you want someone to help if this had been your family?”
I also go door to door to hand out gun locks to keep kids from accidentally firing off guns in homes. I think that my trust and faith in God has given me the ability to do what I do. I stay “prayered up” all of the time because of what my work entails.
In addition to helping families solves homicide cases, I help families HEAL. I feel strong that I am able to provide a safe space for people to share how they feel during the workshops that I run. I don’t want them to feel like they are the only ones going through the pain of losing someone to homicide. I feel strong giving back — and giving my entire life to the people who are feeling the same hurt that I felt. (Roz’s brother was murdered in 2012) I feel like this is my calling. I left my full time job to do this work, but I needed to leave because I needed to be my brother’s voice – and I needed to encourage my mom and my family and help them see that life goes on. It may not be the way you want it to go on, but it goes on.”
*Rosalind (Roz) is the woman behind Save Our City, which is an organization that “works with families of murder victims, helping them to cope with their loss, while working to bring the individuals responsible for the crimes to justice.” Roz does a lot of things. She leads a support group called “Voices of Survivors” for those who have lost someone to violence. In addition to the meetings, she is a crisis responder, showing up at the scene of homicides to help the families affected. Roz also visits the homes of families who have lost loved ones to violence in order to help them heal. She is also a regular presence at the Kensington Storefront, which is a community space at Kensington Avenue and Somerset that is dedicated to healing. The space is open to anyone and everyone including those who are dealing with trauma and substance abuse; food and drink is offered at the space – and there are classes such as: “Tea and Textiles” and “Emotional Painting” as well as yoga classes. All of the services are free of charge.
Roz is standing in front of a “healing blanket” located inside of the Storefront on Kensington Avenue. The Healing Blanket Project is an ongoing community-based project. The textile pieces are made of yarn. This blanket is made of pieces that were linked together and they display the names of victims of homicide as well as words of hope for active addicts visiting the Kensington Storefront. The quilt is meant to be an act of healing. There are other textile pieces at locations around the city.
You can learn more about Roz and her work in this Philly Voice article: