The Message

The goal of Peace During War Project is to reach out to two distinct and separate audiences with a perspective that can only come from the unique experiences of Michael Wilder and Yafinceio Harris and their time on the streets of Kalamazoo, Michigan.

In December 2011, they were featured on NPRs "The Story" and have since dedicated themselves to reaching out to at-risk and troubled teens, both in facilities and out, as well as the educators, counselors, and other professionals they encounter daily.

To the children and young adults, they offer a gritty, honest message of caution and hope. In the hopes of elevating kids beyond the street.They impart guidance and wisdom - "Think twice—don’t get caught up in an “improper fraction”, a split-second act that could alter your whole life, cost you years in prison, devastate your loved ones, and bring on more violence in retaliation". "Don’t catch that felony—it will kill your chances for ever getting a good job or nice place to live". "You are special, talented and loved—believe that— and not the bad things people may have said about you in the past". "Graduate high school, go to college, that’s where it’s at— make being smart and getting good grades 'the new cool.'"

For educators, social workers, politicians and policy makers, public safety personnel, benefactors, and the other forces that can make or break these lives, and are wrestling with the impact of these troubled lives on society as a whole, The Peace During War Project provides a new perspective, a clear understanding, a personal 'human' understanding, and a whole new dialog for addressing the issues of urban violence and poverty and the impact on the coming generations.

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