North Florence Concerned Citizens prepare for “Circle of Unity” Day


FLORENCE, SC (WBTW) – In wake of recent violence across the country and close to home, a group of concerned citizens in North Florence will host a “Circle of Unity” day this weekend.

The North Florence Concerned Citizens group along with other local groups including law enforcement will gather at Iola Jones Park on Saturday to bring awareness about violence and community involvement.

Lashonda Nesmith is a member of the North Florence Concerned Citizens group.

Smith says the purpose of the “Circle of Unity” day is to educate, empower, and hope.

During the rally community members not only in North Florence but across the pee dee will engage in mock scenarios with the Florence Police Department on how to react during traffic stops.

Nesmith says officers will explain the tactics used as well as explain the reason why certain methods are used when people are stopped by police.

“Fortunately this has not been going on in Florence as much as it is going on elsewhere so we want to prevent that. We don’t want to be reactive. We want to be proactive and get the dialogue open,” said Nesmith.

North Florence resident and parent Vanessa Murray has been helping plan for the event since the idea was brought up.

Murray grew up in North Florence, not too far from the Dr. Iola Jones Park. She brought up the idea about a community rally to city leaders months ago to help bridge the gap between the community and those who help serve it.

Murray says there is a need in North Florence and she is proud of the support given so far to make this event happen.

“We’re proud of the history of North Florence and this is what we’re trying to share with our children. You know, we are proud of this park because we played there. We want our grandchildren and our great grandchildren to play there,” mentioned Murray.

The “Circle of Unity” will take place Saturday from 9 a.m. through 4 p.m. at Iola Jones Park in North Florence.

It will include a lot of things such as music, entertainment, a community kickball game and a meet and greet with city, county and state elected officials.

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