Thank you for attending and contributing to last weekend’s Thornton Heath Youth Open Day. Please see below for a short write up of the event and next steps. 

We got connected 

A wide range of organisations, local leaders, young people, families and representatives came together to get better connected and support our local response to youth violence and knife crime. 

We got informed 

Young people told us…

About their desire to better integrate youth provision into their schools and colleges, support their peers most at risk find structured opportunities to get involved in and improve services to tackle poor mental health.

Croydon Police told us…

That total incidents of violent crime with sharp weapons in Croydon were actually down last year but sadly youth violence is still rising in the first quarter of this year; police resources are focused on tackling known groups and gangs with targeted stop and search; community and police collaboration is key tackling the problem, so please do contact the police where you have information or concerns.

Croydon’s politicians told us…

With the available resources, efforts are focused on co-ordinating a public health response – that means focusing on preventative solutions, rather than merely reacting to the problems; ensuring local organisations are supported to collaborate and get access to funding is also a key priority, as is a continued effort to devolve power and decision making.

Community members told us…

About their concerns regarding school exclusions leading to youth violence and increasing pressures on young people due to social media. 

We developed next steps…

Signposting. All the local organisations we identified making a vital contribution to the issue will be signposted via www.thorntonheath.net & http://www.cbmeforum.org/ and we’ll ask the council to do the same

Supporting co-ordination of local organisations and funding is happening via Croydon BMEForum’s CE Andrew Brown, Steve Reed MP who is working to establish a local youth trust and Councillor Hamida Ali email Andrew@bmeforum.org  steve.reed.mp@parliament.uk hamida.ali@croydon.gov.uk 

Improving relationships with the police contact Detective Chief Inspector richard.mcdonagh@met.police.uk with information about serious youth violence and knife crime and Chief Inspector craig.knight2@met.police.uk to develop partnerships between police and the community.

Making youth violence a public health issue Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs), the organisation responsible for health services in our area, must prioritise and fund knife crime prevention for the long term, we’ll keep up the pressure on them to do just that.More events to support us get organised BME Forum Youth Summit Saturday 21st July http://www.cbmeforum.org/events/  & working group established to put on an educational grime event – contact Michael Balamwezi chifa_7s@live.com

What can you do next? 

Write to Steve Reed MP to get involved in the Youth Trust, contact Andrew Brown to attend the Youth Summit and check local websites in a couple of weeks to stay connected to local orgs and others taking action.  

If you’d like to stay in touch with us please sign up for our newsletter via websites www.jamieaudsley.org and https://music-relief.com/ 

Best wishes and thank you

Jamie, Magdalene and Rima

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