An overview of youth violence in Brixton
Brixton has some of the highest rates of violence in London.
For three years, at the invitation of the community, we’ve lived and worked with the community living on Brixton’s Loughborough and Angell Town estates.
Building peace can take a long time. It starts with earning the trust of people from across different groups. So over many months we’ve hosted shared meals, run street-based youth work, taken young people on trips, run creative activities, and worked with children and teenagers in schools. By building strong relationships, we can learn what’s really going on under the surface and seek out the hidden peacemakers.
We look for existing ‘glimmers of hope’ and try to nurture these. One example in Brixton is the informal network of amazing mums who open up their homes to welcome and feed dozens of youngsters and give them a safe space and generous care. They do what they can with the little they have. Such love radiates a widespread positive influence. We marvel at these incredible women and seek to journey with them through the highs and lows of their generous lifestyles.
Lasting peace is achieved when the community itself is empowered to tackle the root causes of conflict – poverty and inequality. Brixton includes some of the most deprived areas in the UK. Many young people feel powerless, trapped and frustrated, that the system is rigged against them. Already surrounded by violence, they are drawn into violence themselves.
CHIPS aims to empower the community to break that cycle.
And, with your support, over the next year we’ll mobilise communities to come together to begin that process.
We’ll bring people from different estates in Brixton together over shared frustrations and guide them to channel their anger into positive action. We’ll support them to identify potential solutions and work together to implement those solutions. This creative, dynamic process of building relational power will grow relationships between people on different estates and start to break down the divides.
It will empower them to bring change, which will in turn reduce their frustration and, in turn, the violence.
As one expert on violence and trauma says “Relational trauma requires relational repair” – it is only through fostering many more safe, healthy, constructive and diverse relationships that we can help Brixton’s community to heal the damage done by this conflict and so seek a future in peace.
HELP BUILD PEACE IN BRIXTON THIS CHRISTMAS
This Christmas, will you stand with the community of Brixton and help them to bring PEACE to their streets, and hope for all young people?
CHIPS is taking part in the The Big Give campaign from 27 November – 4 December.
Support us and your donation could be DOUBLED!
We need to raise at least £12,000 to help fund peacemaking work in Brixton over the coming year. But we can only do this with your help.