LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Louisville may be a city, but there's a completely different country inside the city limits.
A pocket of four neighborhoods with the highest unemployment rate, highest foreclosure rate, highest serious crime rate, and lowest life expectancy rate. Right in the middle of it all is Neighborhood House, a place in Portland that's trying to take at-risk kids off the street and help them beat the statistical trends of the environment where they're growing up.
The Neighborhood House lost one of its regulars a few months ago. Me'quale Offutt, 14, was stabbed to death on a TARC bus. He was one of the teens starting an unusual program at Neighborhood House that teaches kids discipline through the sport of boxing. Retired MSD director Bud Schardein grew up in this neighborhood. He's volunteering his time to teach the boys how to box.
"They don't have a lot of privilege in life a lot of other kids have, to start with. But they're just as smart, just as strong, character's good. They just need reinforcement," Schardein said.
We followed the boys' progression for the last 3 months, since Offutt's death.
"The difference it made in my life is everything really. It shows respect and that's the whole point of boxing is respect," said Brandon Mueller, 14.
Tonight on WAVE 3 News at 11:00, we will show you how a former public official is trying to keep kids from fighting, by teaching them the sport of boxing.