COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – A Columbus organization hosted a Family Fun Fall Festival Sunday, bringing together the community in an effort to stop the violence.

The event, held at Champion Middle School in the King-Lincoln Bronzeville section in east Columbus, was packed with things to do, including bouncy houses, raffles, and trick-or-treating.

“The community comes out in full force because we’re right here in the heart of the community,” Mothers of Murdered Columbus Children (MOMCC) Adult Division Director Jenè Patrick said

MOMCC has hosted the festival in previous years, but said each year, it continues to grow.

In addition to the fun activities, the event also had resources such as housing assistance and the public advocacy group Moms Demand Action, all coming together to help the community learn and have fun.

“Doing this work is very important to me,” Patrick said. “I lost a couple of cousins here in the city to violence, and I’ve lost countless friends at this point. But dealing with the moms and actually seeing the needs that our community has, that’s why it’s important.”

Ohio Sen. Hearcel Craig (D-15th District) said events like the fall festival are all about collaboration.

“I think, when you look at that table of all these young people that have now transitioned, we have lots of work to do, each of us,” he said. “None of us can do it by ourselves, but all of us working together can make a difference in a young person’s life.” 

MOMCC said its mission continues beyond Sunday’s event and is encouraging everyone to do their part to stop violence in Columbus.

“At the end of the day, we have to come together as a community to get this violence to stop and that’s what we stand on,” Patrick said. “And so bringing the community together and getting to know each other, we got to know our neighbors and know the people who are around us so we can begin to have compassion for those around us.”