With only a few weeks to go until the start of his lengthy federal jail term, Jacob The Jeweler is partnering with community organizers in Dallas, TX to introduce a new youth support network.
Jacob, born Jacob Arabo, is scheduled to co-headline a press conference next Thursday (Dec 11) to introduce Positive Xchange, an initiative that aims to curb violence by creating alternatives to mainstream entertainment for at risk youth.
The organization, founded by community activist Omar Jahwar and his Vision Regeneration movement, will launch an online social network at PositiveXchange.com that will mirror many of the current pop-culture influences available to teens online, but with a more positive message.
The site will be supported by several other initiatives including the new M.Y. Journal Magazine, a publication produced, in part, by teens spotlighting the achievements of their peers and offering advice from mentors.
Both efforts are part of Vision Regeneration's dedication to eradicating gang violence in Dallas and its mission to "save the world one child at a time."
In September, Vision held the first annual Solutions Institute and Youth Fashion Show in Dallas with the support of city leaders, prominent business executives, and celebrities including football and baseball great Deion Sanders and his wife Pilar.
"The conference was a great success," Jawhar says, "but we want everyone to know that we aren't just talking about solutions. We are offering solutions. We understand the potential power in the Dallas entertainment and business communities to effectively create models that can be replicated to eliminate youth violence and positively change youth culture."
The Positive Xchange press conference will also introduce a forthcoming Teen Forum, which will address social issues, and provide credit counseling and mentoring.
The new initiative will also partner with Sanders to create a celebrity golf tournament, with proceeds going to Positive Xchange directly as well as other initiatives spearheaded by Vision Regeneration.
Jahwar, Jacob the Jeweler and Bob Woodson, president and CEO of the Center for Neighborhood Enterprise, will also dedicate Dallas as a Violence Free Zone, one of several sponsored by Jacob across the country.
Other speakers at the event will include K104-FM Program Director Skip Cheatham as well as Deion and Pilar.
In June of this year, Jacob The Jeweler was sentenced to a maximum of 30 months in prison for his involvement in a money laundering operation tied to the Detroit-based Black Mafia Family.
As one of more than 25 individuals sentenced in the case, he was ordered to "surrender to federal marshals as notified, but not before January 15, 2009."
Despite Arabo's arrest and dire economic times around the world, Jacob & Co. continues to thrive, recently fetching two of the highest bids at Sotheby's Magnificent Jewels and Jadeite auction in Hong Kong.
The company is even planning on launching a new flagship boutique in the Dubai Mall and is also building a Jacob & Co. luxury residential property in the United Arab Emirates.