© 2021 KALW
KALW Public Media / 91.7 FM Bay Area
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

RYSE Youth Center: A haven for Richmond teens

A. Mendelson
The mural on the outside of the RYSE Youth Center in Richmond, California, where Xavier teaches his beatmaking class to give teenagers a safe haven

The city of Richmond has long had a reputation for violence. But things are starting to change. Recently, the city announced its lowest rate of homicide in 33 years. Even so, Richmond continues to be one of the most dangerous cities in the country. For young people seeking refuge from the violence, there’s the RYSE Youth Center. The organization provides a safe space for students to develop their musical talent and express themselves creatively. From the series Generation Change, reporter Anne Hoffman has more. 

XAVIER POLK: I feel like music is a great tool for stress. Me personally, I sit down and hop on the piano, and just start playing, forgetting about everything that's happening around me and my city.

That piece was produced by Anne Hoffman and Aaron Mendelson. It's part of the series Generation Change from Deutsche Welle. It originally aired in August 2014. To hear the original piece, click here.