Coach hopes the Rock Project Community Center Richmond will be safe space for kids in Richmond

Posted at 12:41 PM, Jun 09, 2024

RICHMOND, Va. -- Mentor and coach Darryl Johnston celebrated the grand opening of the Rock Project Community Center in Richmond on Saturday.

After years of searching for a building for his youth mentoring program, Johnston fell in love with the two-story building at
7 1/2 West Marshall Street in the city's historic Jackson Ward.

"I just always said one day I want to have my own building," Johnston told CBS 6 reporter Joi Fultz last month. "My wife ended up calling me and she was like check your messages, and said, 'You see this building downtown, you like it?' I looked at like three pictures and said, 'I love it.'"

 The Rock Project

Johnston said that after the story aired, dozens of people reached out to him and helped transform the space.

The center, which aims to offer students a safe space to learn, grow and have fun, is in a prime location.

"I’m in the center of downtown Richmond, so now I can get kids from Southside, Northside, Henrico, Chesterfield, the East End."

 The Rock Project

Darryl, who has lost friends and family to gun violence, and his wife Diamond hope the building serves as a safe space.

"When they come through those doors, they are free from everything that may be going on in their lives," said Diamond.

The Rock Project's summer camp kicked off Sunday. Click here for more information.

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