BARRIE, ONT. -- Shak Edwards is no stranger to the public eye.

The 24-year-old woman is an outspoken member of Barrie's Black Lives Matter and organized the Justice for Black Lives protest in June.

She is young, smart, and determined to stand up for vulnerable youth.

She's also behind Shak's World.

"Shak's World was initiated about five years ago as a basketball program in Simcoe County, and it has developed into a program that facilitates a healthy body and mind for youth," Edwards explained.

Edwards said her mission is to bring attention to youth mental health.

Basketball is a big part of her life and the program.

She said when the NBA came to a dramatic stop at Wednesday night's game, she was moved.

"The NBA took a huge stance last night. It was an honour to watch it because it shows people that this is more than a game," Edwards said the movement shows everyone the unbalance in everyday life for many and suggested this is a moment none of us will soon forget.

"I think there is a lot of history happening. There's a lot of history happening because we are changing the narrative.

We would like everyone on an equal playing field so we can enjoy life. It's a marathon. We have to pace ourselves. It's going to be a long race," she continued.

Edwards hopes to open Shak's World in the former Barrie Youth Centre, which is now vacant, in the city's downtown. The facility is fitting for the program because it already has basketball courts.

Edwards is waiting to hear from Barrie City Council to determine if her project will get any financial help.