Youth Social Action via Basketball

LBA & Athan 31

During Summer 2014, young people aged between 10 to 17 can embark on a journey which has the potential to shape a positive future of 18 individual lives. This is a great opportunity so please share this opportunity as it really makes a difference.

Yes, we have great expectations as we know the precious importance of “youth action”.

It’s a great satisfaction when young people feel able to have an impact on the world around them. Young people that have goals and plans for the future are certainly an added value in our community. If they learn how to dream big and be confident, they will have a range of different career options open to them. To all young people we can say: “enjoy getting involved and making decisions, increase your confidence and develop your creativity and skills”. Through Athan 31, a groups of young people aged 10-17 will be supported through a three-stage process that enables them to develop, lead and learn from running their own projects.

1. My Team – learning more about themselves and their peers (£80)

2. My Club – creating a project to improve their youth club (£500)

3. My Community – running a project in partnership to benefit their broader community (£500)


How to apply

  • Contact us before 8 August 2014
  • You can apply via any of our media platforms (see links in the footer of the page)

History of Athans 31

Athan 31, is one of the most prestigious London Youth’s project.

The project started in 1931 with the probably far-sighted idea of a teacher. A group of pupils asked their school teacher to create a youth club. He said he’d help but expected them to organise and run it themselves.

The club that they set up was named Athan 31.

Everyone attending was expected to put something in, as well as take it out. Young people took on leadership roles and made key decisions on how the youth club was run. The young people at the club were supported by a youth worker who believed that young people should be empowered to consider their options, make their own informed decisions and then work together as a team to achieve their target. Over 80 years on, these beliefs and principles are at the core of the programme.

Summer 2014, many years have passed since 1931.

We are confident that all young people who will be involved in this project will love this unforgettable experience with the same enthusiasm and involvement.

 Update 18/8/14

“My Team”

The project started with an exciting atmosphere!

3 Groups in place which include 24 enthusiastic young people, lets see how they got on, but first don’t forget you can show these young people support by posting messages #Athan31LBA.

Group 3 – Movies – Sunday 10th August 14:00.
They met in the lounge after to discuss the movie and start planning the last 2 stages of Athan31. At first it was like pulling teeth but soon enough they started interacting and you could see personalities come through which was nice to witness. The ideas they had were rolling off their tongues, however you could sense that some were still holding back as they held their hands, tapped their toes and only spoke when spoken to. The outcome was to design and buy the first ever official LBA kit for under 18’s and that they would take a group to a professional basketball game hoping to inspire not only young people but their guardians as they could all attend!
Tasks were spoken about and delegated throughout the group, we should have an update by next week…

end picture

Group 2 – Bowling – Tuesday 12th August 17:00.
This group were like glue from the start even though some had not met before this summer holiday. After a #LBAscrimmage session the group walked 25 minutes to the infamous “Queensways Bowling & Ice Skating Rink”, which the group had planned the week before. Upon arrival things went as smooth as they possibly could, as Montel made previous arrangements by booking a lane via a phone call to only find out you can only do so online with a credit card, meaning there may or may not be a lane. To further their chemistry, group member Tilal who could not attend the actually days event looked into discounts and found that if they wrote a letter addressing their reasons and put it on LBA letter headed paper they would be granted up to 25% off!

Back to the evening, it was remarkable how much fun they seemed to be having and how they bonded with one another, one member gave feedback saying “He enjoyed it a lot, personalities came out and that he’s looking forward to the rest of it”. Amine, who is a very well spoken young man with great ideas and a bright future! – Tony Lazare

out side the ice rink

Group 1 – Chicken, Ice-cream and computer games – Wednesday 13th August 15:00. 
After enjoying a meal together at ‘roosters’ the final group came together at one of the members houses to discuss ideas for the the final two stages of Athan 31. At first the guys were a bit distracted by the PlayStation 4 and the NBA 2K14 session that they badly wanted to begin, but after we regained focus the ideas started flowing. This group is quite close as they all live in the Brixton area and at times play basketball together. There was a clear leader in “Ola” as he decided to name himself team captain and also named the group ‘Money Team’ (lol), he presented some good ideas for the my community event and was an overall leader for the day. Adrian and Dotun also presented good ideas on extending the LBA’s reach to South London through promotional hoodies and a community event in the local park. Although Ola was the dominant personality everybody got a chance to contribute and nobody seemed afraid to express their ideas.

The ideas were easily finalised and they began to appoint different tasks for each member, they agreed to discuss these ideas through a social media phone app (whatsapp) and also via email until the next meeting. Overall the group was a cohesive and confident bunch who knew how to present themselves when given the opportunity.
Jamal George – Group 1 Manager

down to businessroosters

Everything is running smooth thus far and we aim to keep up the momentum. However, I’m sure there will be some twist and turns as they run into obstacles which will test their tenacity… to be continued…



Update 3/11/14

“My Club”

After an exciting start summer 2014, everybody involved was actually understanding how this great project would reveal it’s self, even thought it was planned real well. It’s just the nature of the project and LBA’s set up, as our group member are with us everyday during the holidays but as soon as school starts it ever now an then. With this said the October was the next official week long holiday and the perfect chance to nail down the second stage and that’s exactly what we did. It was great to see the positive responsive from individuals. Once they heard they were keen to get back on it plus they already had a plan in place and just need to go over it and prepare for the panel presentation which for the young peoples could be quite nerve racking, yet good experience.

One development had occurred between Summer and October holiday, which was one team has the opportunity to go for £1000 just for their 3 stage “My Community”, but they must decide soon and when presenting it will be in front of a bigger panel and the stage will be a lot more formal with top executives form a wide range of companies like Santander, Barclay’s. Will keep you updated…

Group one decided to buy a tablet. Reason being is ever holiday they have to compete a sign up form which take up time and they all hate doing it. They also feel this will help LBA become more efficient and less time consuming.

Group two are going for official LBA basketball kit. LBA enter teams into tournament and host international friendly game every so often and right now they have to borrow teams kit to play, which is not ideal. The group understood this kit would last for years and benefit a lot of people making them feel proud, special, plus the pictures will look good. Also, LBA will be more professional and that should attract more players and sponsors.

Group 3 went for a camera. They always see the workers phone being used to take pictures and videos which is going to be limited in quality. Can you imagine recording a video and the phone rings… just missed the best high light on the day! This will be a great tool for coaches and player to analyse themselves and use to expose player via Facebook, Twitter and the website.

Update: 12/12/2014

“My Community”

     On Thursday, 11 December, The LBA, along with students from Westminster Academy, made there way to Mayor Boris Johnson’s office at London City Hall. The pitch is all a part of the ‘City Pitch’ project- a joint initiative with the Santander Foundation, and the Mayor’s Fund for London delivered in partnership with London Youth. City Pitch gives young Londoners the opportunity to present their community project proposals to their peers and panel of expert, and pitch for a share of the funding available.

Our six students pitched their idea of having a 2015 Easter Holiday activity for males, females, and the partially disabled ages 14-24 in the London community. The pitch was given to a board of executives from Santander Bank, Barclays Bank, and staff from the Mayor’s office. There was also a crow of people listening to each group pitch their idea.

After having five minutes to pitch their idea, as well as five minutes of Q & A from the panel, the students were successful awarded the full grant of £1,000 to make their project a reality for this upcoming Easter holiday. The students received an overwhelming amount of support from one Santander executive, who even expressed his interest in being apart of the project, as well as wanting to help make this project sustainable and occur every Easter holiday! Thank you to ‘City Pitch’ for making our dream project become a reality!


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Update: 13/2/2014

We got PAID!

Unbelievable, three boys have been given regular work refereeing at a local
youth basketball league in the City Of Westminster. The boys chosen were
thrilled as they never thought that their community would look to them as
positive role models for the younger generation of basketball players. One
of the three said –

“I was so scared but I did it anyway, and although I never blew my
whistle in the first game, my co-referee supported me and the players &
parents never gave me a hard time. This gave me confidence for the rest of
the games and when I got home my mum was like “where did you get the money
from?” and ended up calling my coach to make sure I was telling the truth.
Thank you LBA and London Youth for putting me on this journey, I can’t wait
for the final stage, where we get to work with “London Lion’s” who are
London’s only professional Basketball Club” to run my community.

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(Orange circle represent our young people refereeing an actual game)

For LBA this has also been exciting and beneficial as the local kids league
are in talks to expand next year, in regards to having more local people
helping out officiating the games. We to would like to thank London Youth
& the Young People that endured this journey, LBA are very proud of you.

Updated 1/6/2015


It took just under a year to complete the journey and gosh it was worth it! These young people have so much to offer society and they proved it not only to the world but to themselves, which is super empowering. Here is what the groups did with there final stage “My Community”.

Group 1 & 3- Teamed up but had separate roles in the first ever LBA ‘End of Season College Tournament’. They decided to included all the teams for the league but also have it open for teams not in the league to enter this one day tournament. Group 1, have some experience in playing in tournaments in and out of London, so they had the responsibilities of making sure the overall standards were good on the day. Things like how many referee, the venue used trophies/prizes, which is super important, and having food available on the day. Group 3 with heavy work load as they hire staff, such as referees, table officials, caterers and make links with other organisations to be apart of the event and help form new lasting relationships. A lot of involvement and guidance needed, but we always knew it was going to be alright on the night!

Please click here for some pictures taken and a link to the article written about the event.

Group 2- Received the ‘City Pitch’ grant allowing them to double up giving a grand total of £1000 to do there ‘My Community’ project which is ‘2015 Easter Holiday Camp’, where players from all over London can come down to a great positive environment to play the game, at affordable price of £1 a day. This fee was significant as they never wanted to give it for free as they felt people may not respect it. They negotiated with the sport center to get the court at a discount, making a great partnership with them and the LBA. They hired referees and hosts to make sure it ran to a high quality which is something you don’t see in London. Normally player call their own fouls and that can lead to disagreements and delay game time. The only issue they had was a professional player was to come down give an inspiration talk and possible play, but it nevr worked out.  However it’s turned out fabulous with around 100 different people in attendance over the 2 weeks. Great news, this project is our most popular and is continuing . Check out this clip of what they started.