URBANA, Ill. (WAND) - Pastor Courtney Caruthers is trying to get parents involved to take the neighborhood back.
The first step is coming together to form a solution. He said in order for a community to raise a child, it takes a community of parents to help other parents.
When violence erupted at Urbana High School, it was reported the fights were retaliation to a shooting of a teenager in July.
"I started to cry," Caruthers said. "That could've been my child, that could've been my daughter."
The pastor said so much in the community can be done when parents work together. He and many Champaign-Urbana residents are involved in a outreach program called "Sharing Thoughts and Effective Parenting", also known as S.T.E.P.
The goal is for parents to communicate, especially parents who have been affected by gun violence. Caruthers said an environment of parents coming together strengthens hope.
"It gives a time to be free and to say 'look, I too am going through something. I too have experience and you're not alone in this situation."
He's calling for a cease fire as well. Caruthers said there's hope for his community. He wants S.T.E.P. meetings to be a place parents to not only talk, but take action.
S.T.E.P. meets every other Monday. The next one is on Feb. 18.
WAND News followed up with the Urbana Police Department about the July shooting of a teenager. No arrests have been made.