Kids Off The Block
Diane Latiker had had enough.
After watching her eight children drawn toward a life of gangs and crime in Chicago’s impoverished Roseland neighborhood, Diane finally pulled her 13-year-old daughter in off the block. And she welcomed every one of the neighborhood’s teens in, too.
Soon her home bustled every afternoon with music and conversation. “Miss Diane” realized how desperately these young people wanted an alternative to the cycle of violence outside. She built her open houses into a program of tutoring, sports, health education and community service that helped unite a neighborhood so often divided by gang loyalties.
See Roseland and Kids Off the Block through Diane Latiker's eyes.
The African American Legacy, recognizing the beginning of a powerful force for change, provided Kids Off The Block with its very first grant of $10,000. Today, high-school honor students credit the program with transforming their future—and even saving their lives.
“I tell them to have dreams,” Diane says, “and if you falter, we’re here to pick them up.”