Antisocial youths in Bradford being educated thanks to Police and Crime Commissioner’s Safer Communities Fund (19 Feb 2016)

A peer education scheme is bringing at risk young people in Bradford together with ex-offenders to help steer them away from crime.

The Engage Project, which is run by West Bowling Youth Initiative (WBYI), has been awarded two grants of £3,880 and £4,900 by the West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner's Safer Communities Fund which uses money seized from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act. The project engages young people in positive activities to improve their behaviour. It has developed a community-led educational programme to help reduce antisocial behaviour focusing on speeding cars.

Haqueq Siddique - West Bowling Youth Initiative Project Manager - said: "The project diverts those most at risk away from antisocial behaviour by providing activities that form a preventative approach through the peer education programme. It engages a core group of ten ex-offenders who work with over sixty 11-19 year olds through a series of workshops around youth crime and road safety.

"The involvement of young volunteers and ex-offenders has enabled young people to take part in this project. The Safer Communities Fund has raised our credibility in the community which has been helpful.

"The SCF grant has been very important to support WBYI to achieve its objectives of working with at risk young people through a community-led approach. The funding is vital to enable project workers and volunteers to work directly with young people who are otherwise disconnected from and likely to be involved in antisocial behaviour. "

West Yorkshire's Police and Crime Commissioner, Mark Burns-Williamson, said: "Trying to reduce the issue of speeding cars in Bradford is a great use of the money they've been awarded. Speeding motorists are a cause of great concern to people in Bradford and anything that can be done to educate and divert young people away from this antisocial and dangerous behaviour is of great benefit to them and the local community."

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