Youth Conference

Late last year, I was introduced to a lovely lady by the name of Theresa Cave. Sadly, Therea’s son Chris was killed due to knife crime, which prompted her to start a campaign to educate people about the dangers of knives and how we can help the communities of today.

She asked me to be part of the First Youth Conference which was held in Redcar; I jumped at the chance to help.

The day came and I woke up at 7.15am (damn bladder) sorted out my bag, got petrol and set off for Redcar. It was very windy on the drive down with a massive crosswind, I had just had my jeep fixed so I was crossing my fingers to make it in one piece. I made it down in good time despite the wind and arrived at 9.10am.

Once I arrived, I grabbed some coffee, and decided to sit and watch all the people arrive.

The conference was held within a community centre, each room dedicated to a workshop which would uniquely inspire and educate young adults. It began in the conference suite, with a panel of guests. The audience, which was made up of 150 young adults from various backgrounds and youth groups, were guided through the activities of the day and introduced to the panel, myself being a member. We were then shown a short film about the siblings of knife victims, which was made by Tom Cave (the younger brother to Chris, who was tragically killed).

The film interviewed siblings of knife crime victims and the lasting effect on them due to this most horrific type of crime. The film was thought provoking and lovingly done from a unique point of view. The room sat in silence and many of us shead a few tears as the reality hit home of living with the aftermath of such an awful crime; you don’t just kill a person you kill a whole family!

We broke for lunch, I sat writing notes and thinking over the morning. After lunch everyone was split up into 4 groups which included, Art, written word, first aid and my workshop which was self defence and awareness. The groups would rotate every 40 minutes until they had been to all the workshops then come back for a Q & A with the panel to close the conference.

AFC Workshop:- My aim was to create

1. A healthy state of fear about knife crime and what you can do about it!

2. How it feels to be confronted by people or a person with a knife

3. There are no 100% foolproof knife defences

4. There is no such thing as overprotective when it come to knife crime

5. What to use to defend yourself and escape

It was great to see everyone join in after a little bit of prompting and how they seemed to change during the workshops; I only hoped they learned the effect knife crime has on everyone involved in the using of these weapons and the devastating effect it has on so many lives.

It was great to see everyone join in after a little bit of prompting and how they seem to change during the workshop; I only hoped they learnt the devastating effect knife crime has on everyone involved.
We all met back up in the conference suite and thanked everyone for the positive attitude that was held throughout the day.

On a personal note, I would like to thank Theresa for asking me to be a part of this amazing day and to everyone that was involved, you should be proud of the difference in people’s lives you have made and to continue to make in the future.

Until next time, big love from the AFC

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