Say no to violence project

Young Ambassadors say no to gangs

26 July 2017

Team London Young Ambassadors from Phil Edwards Pupil Referral Unit in Croydon feel passionate about the menace of gangs.

Young people often feel under pressure to join one when they start secondary school. A sense of community, the need to fit in, a desire for protection, or simple peer pressure are some of the reasons that make the idea of joining a gang attractive.

And so, the young volunteers decided to tackle the issue by delivering talks to primary schools across their borough. They felt that it was important to discuss the realities of being in a gang with Year 6 students, before they left to go to secondary school.

The Young Ambassadors began their campaign in February, with their first visit to All Saint’s CE Primary School.

Rob, WE School Coordinator for Phil Edwards, said of the trip,

The students really focused and applied themselves, with the passion for the issue of gang violence shining through. When they visited All Saints Primary they captivated their audience and delivered a very strong message; it was amazing to see their hard work pay off.

Afterwards, the teacher at All Saints invited them to come back and speak to more students as she said she felt that the Primary school students could learn a lot from them.

 

As well as being a positive influence on their younger peers, the project is helping the young volunteers to develop other skills. Many of them have never spoken in public before so they practiced different speaking techniques, discussing what good public speaking looks like.

They now plan to take their talk to all primary schools in Croydon so that all Year 6 pupils have the chance to hear their advice and guidance.

With their commitment to help others and to educate on this important issue, the Young Ambassadors are doing themselves and the programme proud.