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'We need to do something about this': A protest against violence Saturday hopes to make a statement

Queen Hayes hosts first stop of what she hopes will be a multi-city parade to stop violence in Central Georgia.

MACON, Georgia — Violence has been a major conversation in Central Georgia. But one woman is tired of talking and is ready for action.

Queen Hayes of Covenant Life Cathedral Church is ready to end violence in her community.

 "We need to do something about this. We don't need to just talk about it," Hayes said. "We need to get out from our four walls in the churches, and also come out of the four walls in our homes."

Hayes has hosted annual unity parades since 2019, but this year she wants things to be different starting with a name change. 

 "[I waned to] change the name to the multi-city stop the violence parade to get other cities involved, get the community, get the neighborhood, and get the home involved." 

The reasoning behind the change was simple: violence is a much more far reaching issue.

"I wanted to do that because there's so much violence that's going on," Hayes said. "It's not just a Georgia problem. It's a national problem."

Hayes is very passionate about stopping violence because she is a survivor of assault. 

"I was raped three times at the age of 10, 12, and 19, and it was swept under the rug," Hayes said. "I felt now it's time to come forth and do whatever God has for me to do." 

She believes that her purpose is "to inform, to enhance, to enrich, and to enlighten the people," and her activism against violence is part of that purpose. 

 Minister Carolyn Rainey explained why she works with Hayes and the impact she leaves on people.

"She has that heart," Rainey said.

 She also talked about Hayes' survival attitude towards her past abuse. 

"God delivered her and her passion to help others be successful," Rainey said.

Hayes will host the first stop of the "Stop the Violence" parade this Saturday.

 She hopes to speak with people from surrounding cities to select the next host.

"The more people come together, [the more] we can work together," Hayes said. "It's time now [to do] as much as we possibly can to put violence to [its] demise."

The parade will be Saturday at Macon Mall. The parade's lineup starts at 8 a.m. in front of Burlington, and the march begins at 9 a.m. 

The route will go from the mall to Hayes' Covenant Life Cathedral Church on Bloomfield Road. 

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