ST. LOUIS, MO. - The congregation of Berean Seventh-Day Adventist Church is no stranger to violent crime in their neighborhood.
In the last month and a half, two young men have been shot and killed near their church, both of them in their early 20s.
"Almost on a daily basis, we are hearing about individuals losing their lives, and so I'm looking for ways that we as a church can help trim that down."
That's where Danise Taylor comes in. Taylor is the outreach coordinator for the church.
She put together Saturday's event honoring several people for the work they do in the community.
"The state of things today requires us to take some actions to kind of build up those areas that are broken down."
Those areas include safety, health, education, leadership, wholesome media, and access to services and employment.
Taylor says these areas are necessary for a healthy community to thrive – and the church wanted to recognize individuals who deserved to be honored because of their actions.
St. Louis Metro officer Samuel Stewart was one of three police officers recognized.
"I think the more and more that people get involved, especially the churches [that] get involved in the community and allow for everyone to come together and actually be a part and have some fellowship, it would create a better community atmosphere and in the long term help out to even make my job easier for the community."
By partnering with people in the target areas, the church hopes to make an impact on the neighborhood and community at large.
(© 2016 KSDK)