RALEIGH (WTVD) -- When you're at the ABC11/LeithCars.com Raleigh Christmas Parade presented by Shop Local Raleigh and you hear the boom, boom bass of a drumline and see dancers breaking it down to the beat, it's probably the Helping Hand Mission Band.
The band is ready to do work and put on a show at the parade, but the Helping Hand Mission Band is much more than just fun - for many it's hope.
"We do outreach programs to the youth in the southeast Raleigh neighborhoods to keep them away from the gangs, the violence - it's really a positive thing," said Tyree Debnam a drum major with the band.
"When you have young people smiling, that's the key," said Sylvia Wiggins, director of the Helping Hand Mission. "Love, laughter is the key to happiness, and people getting along and respecting one another."
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"It's love! It's love! The vibe is love," said Debnam describing the atmosphere during a rehearsal for the parade.
The fun of it all is empowering the youth like 10-year-old A'mericle Bundy-Williams, who dances past her health issues.
"The heart problems doesn't stop me a following my dreams," said Bundy-Williams. "One of my dreams was being in the Helping Hand Mission."
Debham calls the Helping Hand Mission his second home.
"Me, a witness myself, it has changed my life," he said. "It has completely took me out of the streets, get a stable mind. It's a positive thing."
As the mission gets ready to celebrate Christmas, they hope you'll join them through your own outreach
"I think we need to reach out, show our love for people and everybody in every corner of the world," said Wiggins. "Every corner of Raleigh they see, somebody that they know could use some help."
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