The TraRon Center in the News


'Put down your guns!' | Kids talk trauma of living in the heart of gun violence


“It don’t feel comfortable with the gun violence, because some kids might get shot, and some kids already died," said third grader, Amari Lyles.

Amari goes to the TraRon Center in Southeast multiple times a week to get trauma counseling.

There, they can let loose and play while talking about the tougher topics that pervade their lives. 

I’m Scared To Die:’ Children In D.C. Cope


Several children at the Langston Lane Apartments in Southeast Washington, D.C., saw the body of 15-year-old Gerald Watson after he was chased down by two assailants, shot, and killed in December.

The shooting happened just a short walk away from the TraRon Center after-school program, a community anti-gun violence resource and refuge for some two dozen children. It’s housed in the same apartment complex where Watson lived and was killed. Read More

'Changed for the rest of their lives' | Another child shot in D.C.


“These children’s lives are changed for the rest of their lives, but it’s not just them. It’s the children around them, the teachers, everybody in that child’s community," said Nickens.

Innocent children being shot on the streets has become a seemingly unending problem.

Read more.

Exhibit Displays Emotional Toll of Decades of Violence in DC

An exhibit called “Washington’s Other Monuments” will be at Temple Sinai in Northwest D.C. through February 17. It includes an extraordinary video compilation from two film projects documenting three decades of Gun Violence in the District. (Published Wednesday, Feb 6, 2019 | Credit: Jackie Bensen)

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‘We’re Still Out Here’: Local Teen Activists Reflect On A Year of Anti-Gun Violence Activism

While the TraRon Center, a non-profit that provides services to help people cope with gun violence, is not directly involved with the student activists, founder by Ryane Nickens said that they “hope to build the advocacy in the young people, no matter how young they are …. they are the ones who are suffering, the ones whose voices are being ignored.”

2018 News


Our Founder/President Joined Host Kojo Nnamdi and Guest to talk about Experiencing Gun Violence

Our Founder/President Joined Host Kojo Nnamdi and Guest to talk about Summer Programming for Kids

Our Founder Joins Education Advocates and Students on WAMU 88.5 Kojo Nnamdi Show

In Plain Sight: The Slow and Steady Massacre Killing the Future of Black and Brown Youth

Our Founder/President was invited by Princeton Theological Seminary to submit an article on gun violence. Read her thoughts here:


Our Founder/President Spent the Day with Reporter Joanne Kenen from Politico

EAST OF THE ANACOSTIA - We spend a lot of time talking about mental illness as a cause of gun violence ... and not enough looking at mental health after gun violence. Or in a neighborhood where gun violence is pervasive. Our editor Joanne Kenen met a remarkable woman, Ryane Nickens - who lost her brother, pregnant sister, and uncle to DC's gun violence - and is trying to do something about it. 

Joanne spent a day with Nickens in a tough Southeast neighborhood called Washington Highlands. "When a community has suffered generational violence, its hope becomes fragile or nonexistent," Nickens told Joanne as they walked a few blocks from yet another drive-by shooting. "The community can become conditioned to accepting things as they are with no real hope for what could be." Read more of Joanne's story here