Conclusion

(a)-This seminar has shown that numerous risk factors interact to result in violence among young people and knife-related violence. Young males have significantly increased risk of being involved in violence. Being a victim of child maltreatment and having other adverse experiences in childhood are important risk factors for being a victim or perpetrator of violence in youth.
This emphasizes the need to undertake a life-course approach to problems solving and locate new ways that might address the changing modalities of crime and save lives.

Differences in mind sets of parents and children of first and now second generation on life in UK, success & challenges in life and how the virtual gap is exploited by agents of negative influences were major risk markers were implied during the discussions.

Physically present parents but absent to offer quality emotional parenting was a highlighted factor by the youth

(b)-There are, however, protective factors such as good parenting, improved communication and quality time with the youth and their families, with bodies of authority and influence like Faith and cultural groups, the Met Police, to spur enhanced social skills and positive community support and involvement.

The future seminars by BHA would look at collaborative programs and joined up initiatives that aim to reduce these risk factors and enhance protective factors to prevent crime and violence among young people. BHA will continue to taking a facilitating role to the youth and encourage them taking the leading role to promote confidence as well as aiding adults to create more dialogues with the youth and authorities to bridge the gaps.

(c)-Collaborative initiatives involving the Metropolitan police, Mayors safer neighborhood office and other cultural & faith based organizations need harnessing and nurturing. As clearly put by one young male participant “It’s cool to see a policeman seated with us and sharing his experiences, but its only because he is not in uniform”.

A thought provoking afternoon demanding more questions and answers that individual parents cannot respond to in silos but as a community we possibly can organise and do something with Government, police, communities , faith leaders and most importantly engaging the youth to listen to their stories. We can do it, we have been trying and we can do more and better..We cannot fully get lid of crime and crime is not static but evolves. Building a therapeutic network amongst our communities from cultural perspectives to build evolving synergies and always being mindful of our roles, responsibilities and duties to give back to our communities.

 

Compiled by Masembe-Nkata facilitator of YCT working with BHA.
Thanks to all participants Metropolitan Police, Safe neighborhood, the organizing committee BHA, Iteso community in UK & ST Andrews Church Waterloo.

See copy of addendum:
A reflective account by Avril Jones (S &S community lead Southwark)