The Reverence Project (TRP) is a local organization with a global agenda, with a mission to provide innovative community-centric services to survivors of crime through healing centered engagement, shared safety advocacy, and community leadership training.
TRP’s vision is to shift the current social philosophical culture of shame, guilt, fear and violence to a loving culture that embraces healing through truth, compassion, forgiveness and a deeply internalized reverence for the spirit of humanity.
The Reverence Project’s history is rooted in the journey of work, experiences and relationships of it founder Aqeela Sherrills.
Aqeela grew up the youngest of ten children, in the Jordan-Downs Housing Projects in the Watts community of Los Angeles, California. At the age of 19, he began working with football star Jim Brown and co-founded the Amer-I-Can Program, Inc. to heal gang violence around the country by negotiating peace treaties in various cities.
In 1992, Aqeela and his brother Daude Sherrills, along with several others, forged the historic peace treaty between the Bloods and Crips in Watts.
In 1999, in order to address the overwhelming personal and social issues and trauma experienced by members of the community, Aqeela and Daude created the Community Self-Determination Institute.
On January 10, 2004, Aqeela’s 18 year old son Terrell, home from studying theater arts in college, was shot and killed. Determined that Terrell’s death not be in vain, Aqeela launched The Reverence Project to develop comprehensive wellness centers in urban war zones in order to introduce those who suffer from high levels of trauma to alternative healing technologies to support individuals on their healing journeys.
The Reverence Project was incorporated as 501(c)3 public charity in 2014.