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Engaging Youths One-on-One in fight to reduce Crime
Some youths In Toxteth Liverpool on Friday April 21 2017 had a one-on-one chance to develop the Communications, self-esteem and anger management skills that will prevent them from adopting any kind of anti-social or indulge in criminal behaviour.
Communications expert and former Solicitor Matthew Thorneton-Field was again the main facilitator as Liverpool based Charity Citizen Outreach Coalition continues its series of workshops on the theme “Just Say No 2 Gangs, Guns & Drugs”. It is a Big Lottery Fund sponsored project.
The workshop, the second to be held at Power House Hostel in Liverpool started off with the projection of four short Youtube films Viz: Anger Management Strategies, Compilation of People Flipping out in Public, Comic Relief-Catherine Tate & David Tennant and Nan annoys the anger Management Group. All the films according to Mr Thorneton-Field were intended to illustrate some of the problems bad communications and not listening to the views of others can cause in everyday life. The films also gave participants a chance to laugh and break the ice for the more serious business of the day.
Using flip charts and a more participatory approach, Mr Thorneton-Field explained how effective Communications, knowing the limits you cannot cross in public spaces and the need for confidentiality were effective tools in anger management. He was particular that until participants learnt to respect each other, take good life choices and have role models to look up to, they could easily be victims of peer pressure and get into anti social and criminal behaviour.
Participants learnt effective self-meditation and while sometimes just sitting still and having quality thinking and self-awareness sessions could resolve the way they react to difficult and sometimes life crisis situations.
They later had a chance to ask questions about self-motivation, staying out of trouble and growing up with achievable life goals.
Rebecca Dowselt 19 described the workshop as eye opening and relevant. A university student, she said attempts to advice some of her friends to stay away from gangs and drugs always fell on deaf ears because of peer pressure. She is studying for a nursing degree and her advice to young people is “always think about your future and your family when taking any decisions that might affect you negatively”.
Sylvania Clark 20 said the workshop has helped her to reassess her options and to always try to keep things under control. “Everyone has different ways of dealing with things and it depends on what they have gone through” she said in reply to a question on why some of her peers take drugs and are in gangs. She said she always did and will always be there to provide a supporting shoulder for her friends in trouble by listening to them and helping them stay straight. On practical ways of avoiding crime, she advised young people to “find something that you are passionate about whether that football, singing, acting, something that is, instead of you taking that drug, that is going to benefit you because drugs don’t benefit anyone physically or mentally”.
Rawand Hassan 21 from Kurdistan said crime never pays and he was enjoying the love and support he was getting since he arrived Liverpool.
More workshops and pubic campaigns are scheduled in the days and months ahead according to Citizen Outreach Coalition Project Manager Francis Ngwa.
Workshop facilitator Matthew Thorneton-Field flip charting