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27 August 2013
New funding for crime reduction initiatives

The Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) has granted Croydon Council £600,000 to fund six crime reduction and community safety initiatives this year.

Getting young people away from gangs is a key focus of the funding, with £105,000 contributed towards helping 18 to 25-year-olds turn their lives around and reducing gang-related reoffending.

The young people will get help with education, skills training, personal development and apprenticeships.

The cash will contribute to the Growing Against Gangs and Violence programme – a schools-based initiative aimed at getting in early and preventing pupils joining gangs and committing serious youth violence.

It will also support the intervention work of the Safer London Foundation, with £57,240 awarded to help its work with young people affected by gang-related violence and /or sexual exploitation.

The foundation works closely with young women, aged 11 to 18, who are known gang associates, offering one-to-one support and help with resilience skills and understanding healthy relationships.

Croydon’s highest risk group of 50 young people will also benefit from £65,000 to provide assessment and intensive intervention work to 15 to18-year-olds who are involved in gangs and serious youth violence.

The Breaking the Cycle scheme provides a chance for them to move away from a life of crime by providing them with one-to-one support, mentoring, coaching, basic education and help to prepare for work.

Cabinet member for community safety, councillor Simon Hoar, said: “The Breaking the Cycle scheme has already seen good success, and this money will help encourage more young people back in education, training or employment.”

Young people will also be diverted from the criminal justice system by the triage prevention service, which has received £65,000 towards its work.

Triage aims to reduce serious youth crime through early identification, and to divert young people committing low level offences towards a better life.

The service is provided through a partnership between the Youth Offending Service, police and health. It will use the funding to help at least 200 young people at risk of substance misuse.

Work will include drug screening and assessments, treatment, drugs education and workshops.

Westminster Drugs Project will receive £231,000 for its pathway to treatment plans, which will track and engage drug misusing offenders.

The cash will help to reduce crime and to support offenders to address their substance misuse and prevent reoffending by supporting access to education, training and employment.

Help will also be given to reduce the number of victims of crime, such as domestic burglary, with an £80,000 budget contributed to Croydon’s integrated offender management work.

Many offenders have substance misuse problems, which is a strong contributor to their behaviour. The money will be used to link them with support agencies and mentoring services and to monitor their risk or reoffending and harm.

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