Rowing and predictive analytics - the youth projects getting cash to tackle violence

Gabriella Jozwiak
Monday, November 26, 2018

The Home Office has announced funding worth £17.7m over two years to 29 projects working to divert children and young people away from violent crime in England and Wales.

The Breaking Barriers initiative combines rowing with mentoring to promote soft skills such as time management, communication and teamwork. Picture: Morguefile
The Breaking Barriers initiative combines rowing with mentoring to promote soft skills such as time management, communication and teamwork. Picture: Morguefile

Here is a rundown of which youth projects will receive the money, made available to police and crime commissioners across the country.

London Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime for £4.2m
(across 10 projects)

Pan London Rescue and Response County Lines Project - will support young people being exploited, or at risk of exploitation, through "county lines" crime, providing a rescue service for those young people being exploited, as well as training frontline professionals across London to better identify and divert young people away from exploitation earlier.

DIVERT - A programme to divert young people into employment, development and education opportunities at the point of police custody will expand from two sites in London - Brixton and Croydon - to a further two - Lewisham and Stoke Newington.

Your Voice - Your Future
- Running across the London boroughs of Barking & Dagenham and Redbridge and co-designed with local schools, a risk assessment tool identifies children and young people who are at risk of becoming involved or coerced into violence and crime, or those who are at risk of exploitation. They are then offered a tailored intervention programme from agencies including children's social care, youth offending services, health, police and schools.

London Borough of Harrow - Programme to target the most at-risk young people with preventative interventions that directly address the main drivers of serious violent crime in the borough. Police, the council, schools, expert local voluntary and community organisations, youth workers, parents and carers and the wider community will work together to provide mentoring, one-to-one and group counselling, social and emotional skills training, parenting support, and specialist training for professionals on managing conflict.

Breaking Barriers Southwark - Combines rowing with mentoring, on the basis that the soft skills required to be a successful rower, such as time management, communication and teamwork, are also necessary for success in the classroom and in the workplace. It will target areas where young people are at risk of crime due to a range of factors largely driven by deprivation. Since a successful pilot in 2014/15, Breaking Barriers has been available to Year 10 pupils at schools in Newham, Islington, Tower Hamlets and Southwark.

London boroughs of Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea and Hammersmith and Fulham - A project to establish an "innovative" unit across the three councils with the aim of increasing the consistency and quality of support for children and young people at risk of becoming involved in youth violence and county lines exploitation.

London Borough of Havering, Crime Prevention Pathway - The Crime Prevention Pathway will form part of Havering's alternative provision offer to young people who are at risk of involvement in criminal activity.

London Borough of Merton - Responsive Community Engagement Team (Re-CET) - Project will identify and respond to early signs of serious violence by delivering a range of interventions involving restorative justice, community engagement, incentive packages and youth work.

London Borough of Camden - Project to locate trained practitioners in police custody, who will use predictive analytics and evidence-based assessment tools to identify those at most risk of being a victim of or becoming a perpetrator of serious youth violence and provide evidence-based support.

Two local authorities - Essex and Suffolk - are already working together with the University of Essex on the use of predictive analytics to identify "at risk" children, in order to support earlier engagement and intervention, and better targeting of services.

Safe Haven projects in New Cross, Deptford and Lewisham Central - Provide an early intervention approach to young people aged 10 to 14 through the establishment of "Safe Havens" - places of refuge in the local high street - where young people can go to complete a social action project that will raise their self-esteem and self-confidence and provide them with the impetus to continue to be a positive influence in their community.

The project will also deliver "For Jimmy" conferences where young people present "safety maps" where they have highlighted issues within their community that makes them feel unsafe, and lead debates on identified issues. The youth-led debates help inform and shape the Safe Haven projects.

Norfolk, £699,850
- Create a Multi-Agency Child Exploitation Team (MACE) that will identify and respond to risk early and at the post-enforcement stage, establish a youth work team to work closely beside it, and provide specialist support and exit programmes to provide positive educational experiences, training and employment opportunities.

Sussex, £891,000 - A project to establish a network of coaches who will receive referrals from the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector, schools, health, statutory partners and police, for under-18s at risk of committing serious violence. Coaches will focus on what is positive in the young people's life, such as existing skills, interests and assets, as opposed to what is absent.

Avon and Somerset, £464,000 - An early intervention and prevention service targeting vulnerable children and young people in areas of high need. A three-layer service will tackle root causes of serious violence through direct interventions for individual children and young people, support to strengthen the family system as a "protective resource", and involve and educate communities to improve identification and prevention.

Merseyside, £700,000 - A joint project between Everton in the Community, The Liverpool Foundation, The Princes Trust and The Shrewsbury House Youth Club to deliver an early intervention programme targeting young people aged eight to 19. Everton in the Community will be the lead organisation in the Merseyside Youth Alliance which collaboratively aims to identify and gain the trust of young people, engage them in a "non-mandated" environment at schools, youth clubs, outreach provisions and youth hubs, understand their vulnerabilities, identify external situations from which they need to move away, and offer positive and diversionary activity.

Essex, £664,000 - Support work done through the existing Violence and Vulnerability project in Essex. This will include training professionals with the skills to approach, engage and take a trauma-informed approach when working with young people. Meanwhile "firebreak" early intervention activity will be undertaken to engage those most at vulnerable to the threat of violence. Health intervention activities will also take place at the "teachable moment" in Essex hospitals.

Humberside, £337,500 - The Box Clever project has four interlinked components, including Not In Our Community - an awareness and interactive information campaign aimed at children and young people. The campaign will engage all schools across Humberside and provide interaction with children and young people through social media platforms.

West Midlands, £1.8m - Disseminate key messages and target resources and interventions in local areas most affected by violence and where evidence indicates emerging risk or threats.

Northamptonshire, £627,000 - Provide targeted interventions to young people involved in or at risk of becoming involved in serious violence. A dedicated resource from within the local careers service will provide bespoke support to the cohort to get them into suitable and sustainable post-16 provisions. A mentor will also work directly with young people involved with, or on the edge of, gang-related activity.

Suffolk, £57,000 - Thinking Skills Programme will tackle serious violence through group work and individual interventions with young offenders to develop their problem-solving skills, understand the consequences of their behaviour, manage conflict and peer pressure.

Greater Manchester, £1m - A whole-system approach to early intervention and prevention of youth violence through coaching and mentoring, themed interventions to "tackle attitudinal, social and behavioural risk", and external interventions and/or training, referral to specialist services and exit strategies, plans and next steps.

Cleveland, £546,000 - A four-strand programme focusing on: prevention, early intervention, and targeted support including coaching, counselling and restorative services to young people and families with the aim of restoring relationships and empowering participants to take control of their lives.

Devon and Cornwall, £528,569 - The project will deploy the Youth Exploitation Tracker Assessment (YETA) across South Devon, then expand throughout Devon to allow the identification of those already involved, or at significant risk of engaging in violence and gang activity, triggering tailored rapid intervention.

Northumbria, £371,632 - Following interaction with a youth offending worker, a young person will be directed to one of three pathways - a youth offending team officer, a "street doctor", or a mentor for one-to-one intensive intervention.

Hampshire, £416,829 - Trusted adult workers (TAWs) will be recruited who will be trauma-informed and adverse childhood experiences (ACE) trained. They will receive referrals from voluntary and statutory organisations who become aware that a young person may be suffering from ACEs.

Thames Valley, £822,000 - A combination of training and increased support for core services, including schools, while developing bespoke interventions for young people who are perceived to be beyond the reach of early intervention work.

Wales, £1.2m - Work to reduce identified drivers of serious violence, involvement in drug dealing, county lines issues and the prevalence of knife carrying and knife crime through education through direct youth support intervention programmes, media campaigns, and diverting those at risk into sporting and peer-support interventions.

South Yorkshire, £1.2m - To be shared across two projects; one to establish a sub-regional child criminal exploitation (CCE) hub covering the areas of Doncaster, Barnsley and Rotherham. Alongside this, sessions led by young people will raise awareness of the issues and drivers of serious violence including the criminal exploitation of children and young people for profit particularly around the supply of drugs, county lines and the effects of gun and knife crime on the individual and communities.

West Yorkshire, £1.1m - A programme of early intervention projects including employment of keyworkers to support children identified as most likely to start committing violent crime.

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