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Bouncing Back: LBA x Met Police Empower At-Risk Youth through Education and Sports

For five weeks the LBA has collaborated with the Metropolitan Police to provide educational sessions and basketball workshops to young people in Pupil Referral Units. By targeting these specific young people, we aim to reach profiles that are often left behind.
Pius, a certified LBA basketball coach, highlighted the importance of programmes like this in fostering positive youth development.
The kids here have been super engaged with what we are trying to do here, the difference within a week has been insane, Pius said.
Basketball as we all know is a powerful tool, the kids love it and through using police officers in the sessions, we’re able to build trust and fulfil our aim of bridging the gap between the two.
One of the key benefits of the program is that it helps young people develop positive relationships with the police. This is particularly important for at-risk youth who may have had negative experiences with the police in the past.
By building trust and rapport, the programme aimed to reduce the likelihood of negative interactions between young people and the police in the future.
The LBA also works to provide educational opportunities for young people outside of the basketball court.
With the Met Police, we offered workshops and seminars on a range of topics, including violence against women, domestic abuse awareness, mental health, and career guidance.
The success of the programme has also been clear with positive feedback from the coaching staff, school staff and young people. This demonstrates to us that initiatives like this still have a huge role to play in society.
We are so pleased about the outcome of this project, with overwhelmingly positive feedback from those involved as well as seeing the tangible difference in the young people, we can give a pat on the back to everyone involved, Tarik from the Metropolitan Police told the LBA.
Again we wanna give our gratitude to the LBA for their role in this scheme, we all know the popularity of basketball and the skills it teaches those who play it, it is through the basketball sessions and the enthusiasm of the LBA staff that we were able to engage the kids and really notice differences in their mannerisms
Meanwhile, Lukas, the LBA’s social engagement officer, added: One of our key aims is to raise the next generation of hoopers but that doesn’t mean just simply heading over to local basketball clubs or courts.
We want to reach those who are often left behind and the young people at this Pupil Referral Unit provide an opportunity to do this.
A special thanks to the Metropolitan Police and Wandsworth Council for their support and partnership in this project but above all, we send thanks to the young people who voluntarily participated in this scheme.
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