Collaboration and early intervention key to success
A fascinating documentary ‘Inside Peace’ was screened at Muswell Hill Methodist Church on 24 September during an evening organised by Safe Haven and Celebrate Life Events.
The film demonstrated what can be achieved when prisoners are encouraged to come to terms with their actions and realise they can alter future behaviour. Mindfulness, self-reflection and compassion are used to teach inmates how to accept and value themselves. The documentary followed prisoners on their journeys of self-discovery both inside and after release.
After the screening there were progress updates by local Councillor Julia Ogiehor, PC Jon Eldered and Catherine West MP. Other local groups were also present to discuss solutions.
Since Safe Haven’s inaugural meeting in June:
- Police shift times have been adjusted to ensure as many police officers as possible are on the streets 3 – 6pm, the key time for teenagers experiencing trouble.
- The council has confirmed it’s investing in CCTV for crime hotspots, to be rolled out from December.
- Council, Police and community groups are in agreement that a ‘Safe Haven’ scheme will help young people when they feel intimidated. The principle is that recruited businesses display posters advertising a safe space for people to use while waiting for friends/family members to meet them.
- Haringey Council initiated the first ‘Community Conversation’ for Muswell Hill in July and plan to make this a quarterly meeting for addressing concerns of residents.
Cori Josias from Safe Haven said, “While there are many groups doing important work in this area, tonight’s meeting highlighted that we need to coordinate our efforts. We would like the council to take the lead in forming an umbrella group which encompasses citizens, schools, the police and other agencies. Meetings should be regular and inclusive. Targets need to be set and measured.”
Early intervention is also critical, so members of the local community are asked to volunteer their time and skills to help set up mentoring schemes and/or interesting after-school activities in the arts and sports aimed at reducing the number of young people getting drawn into anti-social or criminal behaviour.
For further information:
Stop Knife Crime in Muswell Hill / Safe Haven: www.facebook.com/groups/592154097935818/
Cori Josias: [email protected]
Documentary provided by Celebrate Life Events: www.celebrate-life.co.uk/
How to report a crime:
Crimestoppers: 0800 555 111