Ex-gangster Tells How to Exit Street Gangs

broken home, Christian faith, Rainbow Theatre, young people,

Tuesday 29th May 2012

Young people who are anxious to leave gang life but don’t know how could learn much at a music, dance and drama event that takes place in the Rainbow Theatre, Finsbury Park on Saturday June 2.

Starting at 2pm Who is Damien Jackson? tells the true life story of a former member of the Bloods, one of the biggest gangs in America, and how he turned his life around.  The highlight will be a guest appearance by Damien Jackson, who will be speaking and will sign copies of his newly published biography, Shoulda been Dead.

Damien’s story will be performed by members of the VYG, and will reveal how he became what he swore he would never be, namely a violent, aggressive, cold-hearted rejected criminal.

The tale opens in a broken home with no future.  The young Damien turned to the streets for the things a child should get from his family — food, shelter, love, respect, opportunity, encouragement, guidance, and faith.

He went on to become a notorious Atlanta drug dealer and gangbanger.  And with his talents as a musician, rapper, entrepreneur, leader and fighter unrecognised, he contemplated suicide more than once.

“To learn how Damien escaped from gang life and created a good life for himself as a responsible citizen you will have to come along on Saturday,” said Miguel Lacerda, who leads VYG in the UK.

“I am confident that Damien’s story will attract much attention if his recent tour in the USA is anything to go by.  It certainly has the potential to make a life-changing effect on anyone who is involved in gang life and wants a way out.”

Damien Jackson has already addressed 30,000 high schools and college students in Philadelphia, Chicago, and 11 cities across California, in the course of promoting his book.

As just one example of the response he gained, Darlene Martin assistant principle of the International Studies Academy in San Francisco, where most students in the assembly could relate directly with his story said: “Damien’s book and story has been a tremendous success among our students.”

Tickets for Who is Damien Jackson? cost £2 each and are available from all full time UCKG HelpCentres in the UK or directly from VYG members.  HelpCentre addresses and opening hours can be found on our website at universalchurch.uk

Shoulda been dead relates Damien Jackson’s story as told to author Dave Jackson and is published by Overcomer Books of Jacksonville, IL, USA.  Copies can be obtained from Christian bookshops plus including those in some of the bigger UCKG HelpCentres.


Note to editors 

UCKG is a Christian church and registered charity that offers a range of practical support activities alongside spiritual support and comfort.  It reached the UK in 1995 and has gone from strength to strength, providing support and spreading the Christian faith.

VYG (Victory Youth Group) the UCKG HelpCentre’s youth ministry, encourages young people to maximise their talents and become the best they can be.

For further information contact the UCKG HelpCentre Press Officer via e-mail on press@uckgnew.org or call 020 7686 6033.