13-year-old Malik Bryant wanted peace for Christmas. The Chicago teenager desired it so much, that he wrote a letter to Santa asking that the city be covered in safety.

Now, Bryant’s letter has gone viral. 

From Direct Effect Charities:

“I would like to ask you sum but first imma tell you about me. I’m black African American I stand 5’10” I’m in 7th grade . My favorite subject is math. I have 2 siblings living with me and I’m the only boy on my mom’s side of my family. But anyway all I ask for is safety, I just wanna be safe.”

Read more at Direct Effect Charities

The boy didn’t expect to receive a response from the president, but that’s exactly what happened after the letter went viral. The letter, which was part of Michelle DiGiacomo’s Direct Effect Charities organization, caught the attention of Rep. Michael Quigley (D-Ill.), whose staff sent it to President Obama.

President Obama issued the following response to Malik’s request:

“I want to offer you a few words of encouragement. Each day, I strive to ensure communities like yours are safe places to dream, discover, and grow. Please know your security is a priority for me in everything I do as president. If you dare to be bold and creative, work hard every day, and care for others, I’m confident you can achieve anything you imagine. I wish you and your family the very best for the coming year, and I will be rooting for you.”

Malik received a new computer and Wii game as part of the Letters to Santa program. DiGiacomo says she is currently looking for a home for him.

Every black youth deserves to be safe.

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