Building partnerships in Plymouth to tackle youth crime and poverty

A citywide programme of sport and physical activity in Plymouth is helping to support vulnerable children from low-income families at risk of being drawn into crime and anti-social behaviour to stay out of trouble and develop skills for the future.

The programme is being delivered locally by local sport groups, supported by with StreetGames in partnership with the Plymouth Drake Foundation’s Plymouth Children in Poverty initiative (PCIP), a charity whose mission is to eradicate the social injustice, ill-health and misery caused by child poverty in Plymouth.

This new funding will support community organisations across Plymouth to run programmes designed to steer young people away from law-breaking and into positive activities aimed at teaching teamwork, resilience and discipline. The programme builds on the success of last year’s pilot that saw StreetGames work with community partners in Plymouth to tackle the twin issues of boredom and alienation – leading causes of petty criminality and anti-social behaviour. The programme saw highly-qualified tutors and hand-picked local sports volunteers provide not only structure and expertise, but living, breathing proof of the transformational power of Doorstep Sport.

Sessions were designed to provide participants with the chance to develop themselves, and feedback from the project confirmed that many of the young people involved grew in confidence over the course of the programme, trying new activities and even leading activities themselves.

Kerry Bidewell, PCIP Development Manager, said “Generational poverty is an incredibly hard cycle to break and by working together we are so much stronger and we will disrupt the poor outcomes that poverty inevitability creates; PCiP and StreetGames are enabling children and young people in Plymouth to create a better future for themselves.”

Graham Helm, StreetGames National Partnerships Manager, said: “We’re really excited to be partnering with Plymouth Children in Poverty to deliver this ambitious new programme for young people to engage in Doorstep Sport. The funding is a vote of confidence in the power of sport to provide young people in Plymouth with a positive pathway and to help prevent them from falling into the criminal justice system.”

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