CHICAGO (WLS) — As a Chicago police officer, Jennifer Maddox often responded to crimes involving young people.

“I said ‘we need to really do something to give them an opportunity to have something to do in a safe space,'” said Maddox.

She founded Future Ties. Maddox recently retired from the police department but she’s still working to help teens through Future Ties.

One of those teens is Jakyla Hester.

“In the summer of 2020, I had no idea what I wanted to do or what I wanted to be,” said Hester. “When I got to Future Ties in 2020, we basically just focused on us. We wrote resumes, cover letters, for whatever we wanted to do.”

Hester is interested in photography and video production. She does videos for Future Ties.

Moving forward, the organization has the hopes of opening a new community center.

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