PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As Philadelphia deals with a surge in gun violence, a national museum is looking to honor lives lost to the epidemic. Starting on Monday, family members can drop off personal items belonging to gun violence victims to be displayed in Washington D.C.

“You go through PTSD, you want to commit suicide,” Oronde McClain, the founder of the Oronde McClain Foundation, said. “Like me, I felt like the bullet should’ve finished the job.”

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McClain is a survivor of gun violence. 

 “April 3, 2000, I got shot in the head,” he said.

McClain survived after being shot in North Philadelphia 21 years ago. Since his ordeal, he’s committed to helping other victims of gun violence and their families through his foundation.  

“I’m here to tell them that I want to give them a hug,” McClain said. “I’ve been where you been at, so I’m here to help.”

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On Monday, McClain will be collecting personal items of victims of gun violence for the rest of the week. He’s working alongside organizations like the Gifford Gun Violence Memorial, Price of Freedom, and Mothers In Charge. The items will be donated to the National Building Museum in Washington D.C. Inside, there are 700 glass bricks, which is how many people are killed by gun violence every week nationally.

Museum In Washington D.C. Set To Display Personal Items That Belonged To Gun Violence Victims

“It’s about remembering the victims, people that lost their lives,” McClain said.

Locally, items can be donated at the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania on North Broad Street. They can also be donated at Independence Hall in Old City and the Discovery Center located in Fairmount Park. 

So far this year, Philadelphia has recorded at least 343 homicides, which is 18% higher than this time last year. According to the latest data available from Philadelphia police, nearly 1,500 people have been shot this year.

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Here are the drop off locations:

  • Aug. 23-27, 2021: Co-Host: The McClain Foundation at the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of PA, 4301 North Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19140 TIMES: 3 PM- 7 PM
  • Aug. 25, 2021: Co-Host Giffords at Independence National Historic Park, People’s Plaza, Philadelphia TIMES: 12 PM-7 PM
  • Aug. 26, 2021: Co-Host: Destined 4 Greatness Inc. at Discovery Center, 3401 Reservoir Drive, Philadelphia, PA 19121 TIMES: 3 PM-7 PM