The Broxbourne Youth Council, with the support of Services for Young People (SfYP), organised an event for local young people to learn about staying safe and to discuss their personal safety concerns with professionals. It also aimed to raise awareness of the services and support that are available for young people in the area.
Over 20 young people attended the event, which featured a panel of four professionals from local organisations that help protect children and young people. The panel answered questions and engaged the young people in discussions about domestic abuse, emotional wellbeing, knife crime and exploitation. The young people also shared their own experiences of dealing with bullying, conflict management and reporting crime.
The professional panel consisted of:
Chloe from Safer Places, an independent charity which supports adults and children affected by domestic and sexual abuse and family conflict, who talked about what domestic abuse is and how young people can report it.
Anti-knife crime activist Faron, who has personal experience of knife crime, talked about his Faz Amnesty campaign through which he supports people to hand knives to the police anonymously. Faron works alongside the police and youth organisations to educate young people about the dangers of knife crime. He discussed with the young people practical things they can do to avoid being the victim of knife crime.
Daniel from Hertfordshire Constabulary’s Halo Child Sexual Exploitation Panel, who answered questions about signs and symptoms of child exploitation and abuse. Daniel talked about what young people can do if they are worried about someone they know being a victim of exploitation and how they can protect themselves.
Richard from Hertfordshire Constabulary, who spoke about reducing crime in the area and emphasised the importance of communication to de-escalate conflict. He also highlighted some of the different ways people can report concerns to the police, encouraging members of the community to talk to the police, so that action can be taken.
The panel members were also available for one-to-one discussions with the young people afterwards.
The event received positive feedback, with 96% of the young people saying it was relevant to them and gave them a better understanding of personal safety and that the discussions and activities would help them to keep themselves safer in the future.
One young person said: “I really enjoyed the event. The guest speakers were very useful. I hope there is going to be another.”
Find out more about how SfYP helps young people to stay safe here: