Robbie Williams still shakes her head and grimaces at the 20-year-old memory of seeing a half dozen children, maybe 13 or 14 years old, chained together in court like hardened criminals. ¶ She and the Rev. L.C. Ray had been to visit juvenile court, and what they saw compelled them to start one of Asheville’s longest running nonprofits serving at-risk youths. ¶ “It wasn’t right, and we knew we just had to do something. We were called,” said Williams, co-founder and executive director of One Youth at a Time. ¶ “We’re hanging on now, still hanging on,” Williams said, “but times are tough.” ¶ One Youth at a Time has served more than 4,000 students in Asheville and Buncombe County schools in its 20 years, providing everything from at-risk tutoring programs in schools to HIV education for students and families.
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