For Jimmy, in partnership with Addey & Stanhope School, gave young people the opportunity to voice their safety concerns about Deptford to a panel selected by the charity at a Safety Conference held in Deptford.
70 pupils from seven local schools presented their feelings on safety with the aim of seeking commitments from representatives from their community in attendance at the conference that took place in Addey & Stanhope School.
“It is so important that young people are given the opportunity to share, in a safe environment, their concerns about their local community. It’s equally as important that we, as adults, act on those concerns, where at all possible. We thank the schools and their students for their input, and we thank the members of our communities for coming today.”
Barry Mizen, MBE
Over the past two months For Jimmy has been carrying out focus groups with children in schools across Deptford, gathering up issues and concerns that young people are dealing with on a daily basis in their local area. Some of the issues that have been raised include anti-social behaviour, public drug abuse, violence, a mixed relationship with the police and a lack of access to information and support.
The young people voiced these concerns to the panel that includes Vicky Foxcroft MP for Lewisham & Deptford, Gary Connors from Crime Reduction and Supporting People at Lewisham Council, Andy Carter Lewisham Police Chief Inspector and Phil Turner from Deptford charity, Second Wave Youth Arts. Each member of the panel has been selected because of the vital role they play in the local community and the influence they have over the decisions that are made within policing, the council and local government.
“From a policing perspective, we want to do our absolute best to support young people and create a safe environment in which they can thrive and excel. Young people are faced with pressures, choices, decisions and risks. There are lots of organisations and responsible people who young people can turn to for guidance and advice. Events like these help young people and the agencies come together to build trust in each other for a positive future.”
Andy Carter, Chief Inspector, Lewisham Police
Those in attendance discussed these issues with the children and explored possible solutions and actions they can collectively work towards. The progress of each of these will be monitored by For Jimmy over the next year and the children will be regularly updated so they can see first-hand the impact this youth-led conference will have across their local community.