JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT)–A year-long campaign to promote civility, caring and collaboration between citizens of Jacksonville kicked off Friday.
The campaign is an extension of the city’s mantra of being “A Caring Community” and works with local faith leaders throughout the area to accomplish that goal.
Mayor Sammy Philips along with local reverends and pastors gathered at city hall Friday to announce the start of the One City campaign.
The campaign works to promote respect, caring and collaboration between all citizens for a better Jacksonville.
“We feel that maintaining open lines of communication and by taking the initiative of goodwill and civility, we can actually bring people together,” Phillips said.
The campaign comes after a year of strife between communities across the nation.
By partnering with local faith leaders, the city hopes to create a dialogue of tolerance and understanding.
“We all have to feel that we are a part of the city in which we live,” said Rev. Dr. Amy Ciceron, St. Julia AME Zion Church. “When we feel that we are a part of something, we take ownership. And when we take ownership, we are there to protect it.”
The One City campaign will encourage citizens to take individual and group actions that will promote a more civil society and practice tolerance of views and opinions different from their own.
“This is about unity,” Ciceron said. “This is about oneness. I believe as faith leaders that’s what we’re called to do. It’s not about individual denominations, it’s not about the culture that we serve, not even about the race of people that we serve but rather it’s about the Kingdom because when we get to Heaven, there won’t be sections.”
Previously the mayor had announced the campaign in February during the State Of The Community address.