College students renovate new Ilford youth centre which tackles knife-crime with boxing
PUBLISHED: 07:17 10 December 2019 | UPDATED: 07:17 10 December 2019
A team of college students raised money and renovated a youth centre in Ilford which helps tackle knife crime.
Last week a group of students from Barking & Dagenham College worked together to raise £300 for the boxing academy Box Up Crime, a social organisation which helps young people who have been involved in crime to turn their lives around.
As part of a 12-week Prince's Trust Team programme, the college students, aged 16-25, were tasked with finding a community project to support and come up with ideas to help them.
They did a sponsored walk around London and a bake sale to help buy materials to paint and renovate the new Box Up Crime youth centre in Ilford High Road.
Prince's Trust Team Leader Ryan Jones said: "The students have done very well in finding the project and completing all the work in the short space of time that they had.
"They raised enough money to be able to complete the project and buy everything that that they needed. Well done to the team on a great project!"
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Box Up Crime, which is based in Barking and Dagenham, was awarded a £500,000 grant by Redbridge Council in February and is set to open the new Ilford centre next year.
Young people will be able to visit the new centre to use computer equipment and have a safe space off the streets to engage with their peers.
Box Up Crime says it has helped reduce serious youth violence in Barking and Dagenham by 25 per cent since it launched in 2013.
It has also curbed the number of pupils getting into trouble at school by 28pc.
Barking boxer Stephen Addison, who was made an MBE this year, founded the charity after he lost close friends who were involved in gangs.
He said: "We want to make boxing accessible for young people all over the borough from different walks of life.
"As an organisation we strongly believe in harnessing the talents of young people and giving them the opportunity to make their aspirations come true."