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More than half a million pounds to steer young people away from crime

£600,000 is being invested in reducing the risk of young people in the West Midlands committing and being victims of violent crime over the summer holidays.

The money will be used to pay for activities and mentoring classes for 8 – 25 year olds, living in high crime areas.

They will be invited to take part in a range of activities including basketball, football, netball, canoeing, and boxing. The sessions will include mentoring aimed at reducing violent behaviour and developing confidence and communication skills.

The investment is coming from the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, David Jamieson, in collaboration with Public Health England, the NHS, policing, councils, schools and colleges, local communities and private industry.

This work to tackle violent crime in the West Midlands is part of a wider ‘public health approach’ and is designed to ensure the root causes of violent crime are addressed.

The first activity sessions start on Monday 22nd July, with the majority of projects running until the end of August.

The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, David Jamieson, said: “Crime has been rising across the country and here in the West Midlands we are not immune. We’ve been hit by a rise in knife crime of 85% since 2012.

“That is why I am so pleased we will be able to provide a wide range of activities for youngsters across the West Midlands over the summer period.

“The warmer days and light evenings traditionally lead to a rise in crime, which sadly often results in serious harm, injuries and occasionally even death.

“It is vital that we don’t abandon young people over the summer holidays and we continue to engage with those most at risk.”

ACC Jayne Meir, from West Midlands Police, said: “The funding will provide a great opportunity for young people to get involved in activities to fill their time over the summer holiday. This is a really positive step to divert people away from crime and particularly violent crime at a key time of the year.

“Working in partnership is key to tackling violent crime, police cannot do it alone, so I really welcome the collaboration as part of the wider public health approach to bring this work together.”

See a full list of the summer activities:

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