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Young people in Woolwich will have an increased awareness around the risks and consequences of carrying knives and weapons as a result of a new partnership project launching in the borough next month.
The Woolwich Together project will offer 20 sessions to up to 700 young people in Woolwich to help them understand the realities and consequences of carrying a weapon and offer tools and tips on staying safe and avoiding conflict. The sessions will also incorporate sports, games and other activities to help young people stay positively engaged.
Some will also be available to parents to offer them greater understanding and insight into the issues around knives and other weapons, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to discuss and address any concerns with their children.
The aim of Woolwich Together is to help prevent weapons crime and debunk commonly held myths such as carrying a knife offers a young person protection and safety. The project has come about as a result of a successful application to the Home Office’s Knife Crime Community Fund by charity St Giles Trust and Woolwich-based organisation B Young Stars.
St Giles Trust has over 10 years’ experience of helping young people involved in and at risk of serious violence through its SOS Project. B Young Stars helps young people achieve and become positive citizens through activities and support. Evan Jones, Head of Community Services at St Giles Trust, said: “Through our other work across London, young people tell us that they carry weapons out of fear and we have seen the tragic consequences of this. Our role is to help reduce this fear, equip young people with other ways of staying safe and help them stay engaged with positive activities. We are delighted to be working alongside B Young Stars to help prevent young people from becoming future victims.”
Abdigani Mohamoud Founder of B Young Stars, said: “It’s a great pleasure to work with St Giles Trust who have previous experience of working with young people at risk of committing crime. Their experience combined with our community network at ground level in an area where knife crime and gangs are dramatically at an increase, will help our aim in guiding and advising young people to make better choices in life.”
Cllr Jackie Smith, The Royal Borough Of Greenwich’s Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Integrated Enforcement: "I am really pleased that St Giles Trust have been successful in their bid for funding to work with young people in Woolwich. I look forward to visiting the project to find out more about the role they will be playing in helping to tackle the very serious issue of knife crime."
The sessions will run from October until March 2019 at Woolwich Common Youth Club and Barnfield Hub where B Young Stars is currently delivering its sessions. For further information contact [email protected]