New funding for anti-crime youth schemes

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has announced £700,000 in funding for three youth projects steering young people away from gun and knife crime in the Capital.

The Mayor made the announcement while visiting the Brixton Road Youth Centre, which is managed by young people – the former centre, The Vassal Youth Centre, closed down in 2007 due to mismanagement by adults.

Mayor Boris Johnson said:

These projects are perfect examples of the youth initiatives we desperately need across London to engage young people. They offer guidance, information and most importantly steer young people away from the lure of gangs and criminal activity.

Tackling youth crime is complex and there are no magic solutions but I am determined to make London a safer city for everyone, including young people, who are frequently victims of crime.

As well as more targeted policing efforts, to combat these issues we need strong community projects, which are relevant and interesting to young people and schemes that widen their horizons as well as raise their aspirations.

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Calling the Shots’ will receive £200,000 funding over one year for its work with 16-19 year olds who are at risk of becoming involved in youth violence.
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‘Watch Over Me’ is a project aimed at teenagers that uses educational DVDs and teaching materials in schools, youth groups and community groups to raise the issues of gun crime, drugs, knives and general safety. It will receive £110,000.
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The Kids Task ForceMiss Dorothy.com’ primary school initiative will receive £400,000 for work with schools from 2008-09.

The projects will be funded by the Metropolitan Police ‘as part of their commitment in partnership with the Mayor of London to cut crime and make London safer for young people’, said a spokesperson.

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