Families provided with safe Halloween across South LA communities

SOUTH LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Leaders in several communities in South Los Angeles took steps Saturday night to make sure young trick-or-treaters had a safe place to enjoy Halloween.

Through song and prayer, residents in Compton made their voices heard as they fought to take back their streets.

"We just want to make a positive impact in the community, and we just want to let people know that there are people in Compton who do want a change," Danny Harrison said.

From Compton to Watts to South L.A., residents joined forces at 25 intersections across the area, making a stand before celebrating Halloween at a safe location.

"When we look at the killings and the crime in the inner city, that is a reality for us. But if we as leaders and as pastors and churches open up our doors, I think that we can provide a safe haven in the midst of chaos," said Pastor Michael J. Fisher of the Great Zion Church.

At nearly four dozen safe zones across the city, tricksters enjoyed a night full of treats.

"Outside it's like people shooting and stuff, but in here it's all safe with other people," 11-year-old Shannon Akin said.

From dancing to games to face painting, the focus was on fun without the risk of going door-to-door.

"This is just as cool. It's like more better anyway," 12-year-old Rashad Sanders said.

"I think the kids from this community need the same opportunity to experience the traditions of Halloween like every other kid in Middle America," said Capt. Myron Johnson of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

For kids of all ages and kids at heart, this Halloween was an answer to their prayers.

"Instead of them going out on the streets and trick-or-treating, we can come to a church where we know it's safe, and we can still praise God and have a good time," Compton resident Jermelle Fantroy said.

This summer, the Push 100 campaign held its first push for peace. Organizers said they are already working on their next effort.
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