£9.8 million awarded to community backed projects to confront knife crime and gang culture

Community-backed projects in 21 areas across England will each receive a share of £9.5 million to help families who are vulnerable to the effects of knife crime and gang culture

The Supporting Families Against Youth Crime fund will enable keyworkers, community groups, teachers and other professionals working with children and young people at risk, to intervene early and help stop them from becoming drawn into gang crime, serious violence and the youth justice system.

A further £300,000 will also be available for local authorities across England to train frontline staff on how to tackle childhood trauma. This follows evidence that many who are vulnerable to serious violence and youth crime have experienced childhood trauma that has affected their mental health and confidence.

The funding, which will be channelled through the Troubled Families Programme, will help enable the voluntary and community sector to intervene earlier to help young people develop the personal resilience to withstand peer pressure and make their own positive life choices.

The areas and projects being funded have expressed both an existing need and or evidence of emerging needs and cover a range of positive interventions.

Some are heavily school focused, working with children before they make the important transition from primary to secondary school. Whilst others will work with smaller groups of young people already at high risk.

The funding will also back more in-depth work with parents, carers and professionals to help them fully understand the risk factors and the dangers of their children being exposed to gang culture.

It is intended that the learning derived from each of the projects will be shared nationally. Guidance will also be produced that can be used to demonstrate how this proven approach can reduce levels of need following intervention.

Spring 2019 will also see the launch of the next phase of #knifefree. The campaign, aimed at young people, looks to inspire them to pursue positive alternatives.

Details of the 21 area to receive Supporting Families Against Youth Crime funding can be found at this LINK.