Leeds community group improving community cohesion (1 May 2018)

South Leeds based Reestablish are helping to improve community cohesion and support young people in their area with help from the Safer Communities Fund.

Their Refocus Project provides drop ins for 7 - 12 year olds and covers the Beeston, Holbeck and Hunslet areas. Young people who join the sessions have access to mentoring, support and craft and sport activities. The project is also training up young leaders to help run the project going into the future, feeding back into their own community.

Reestablish's core aim is to invest in lives to see long term change, building healthy relationships that are consistent and safe for some of the most vulnerable. The project looks to instil healthy boundaries for young people within a fun and respectful environment, teaching them that they have options, that they matter and that they don't have to have to get involved in crime. Where someone is born should not determine the rest of their life and the project will offer young people the chance to see that for themselves.

Reestablish received £4,993.44 from West Yorkshire's Police and Crime Commissioner, Mark Burns-Williamson to go towards their Refocus Project.

Mark visited the project yesterday evening (30/04) and said: "This is a brilliant local initiative tackling some really key issues including safeguarding vulnerable people, tackling anti-social behaviour and increasing community cohesion, I am particularly pleased they are working with 7 to 12 year olds as this is a critical age where we can influence young people to make key decisions that can have a lifelong impact.''

"Grass roots projects such as this are vital in ensuring our communities are safe and I was very pleased to support this funding. It was also a pleasure to meet some of the staff and volunteers that work so hard to support these youngsters and of course the young people themselves, it was a great opportunity to hear about policing and community safety from their point of view as well."

Jo Sunderland, Reestablish Team Leader, said: "We really value funding support from the Safer Communities Fund, as we would not be able to provide opportunities locally without it. Life is particularly challenging for those living in the poorer parts of our cities. When our young people grow up around violence, drugs and criminality, they don't always find education easy. Having a place to belong with people that believe in them is essential. Being given opportunities to achieve, to become positive contributors to society is fundamental if they are to ever understand their innate value."

To find out more about Reestablish visit their website https://www.reestablish.org.uk/.

The next round of the Safer Communities Fund opens on May 14 with £200,000 for projects that specifically tackle all forms of serious violent crime, including those focusing on prevention and early intervention, supporting diversion away from crime, protection and education and support for victims of serious violence.

© Copyright West Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner 2019