St. Louis counseling efforts seeks to stop violence before it happens

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ST. LOUIS (AP) _ Volunteer counselors in north St. Louis are taking on a daunting mission: Preventing violent conflicts in the most dangerous part of the city.

St. Louis Public Radio reports that the nonprofit Better Family Life is behind the effort, establishing a hotline for residents to report potential conflicts. Counselors gather in New Northside Missionary Baptist Church and three other churches on Tuesday nights, hosting drop-in hours for those on the edge of violence.

James Clark of Better Family Life says that counselors conducted 13 de-escalation sessions from early December through Christmas.

The program has no funding but organizers hope to attract donors.
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Information from: KWMU-FM, http://www.kwmu.org