Aspire to Change

Since January, the capital has seen twice as many fatal stabbings as in the same period last year. Across the UK, the number of reported knife crimes has been steadily rising since 2015, as have hospital admissions for people assaulted with a sharp object.

Faiths Forum for London has launched Aspire to Change, a project which seeks to tackle gang and knife crime in the London Borough of Brent, through faith institutions and the participation of faith leaders. We believe by involving faith institutions is key as they are the heart of some communities. The project is particularly targeted at young people from ethnic minority backgrounds.

There were 451 detected knife crime offences in the London Borough of Brent in the calendar year 2016, giving the Borough a ranking of 9th out of 32 in terms of the prevalence of this offence (Met Police Total Policing data). The 11-25 age cohort is responsible for the great majority of knife and gun crime incidents in London. The Home Office has identified Brent as one of 30 boroughs in England and Wales with a national-level gang issue; there are currently 21 gangs in Brent (Safer Brent Partnership annual report 2016/17). Gangs and gang related offending continues to remain a concern and a priority for the Borough.

We engage with congregation members which include parents, grandparents or guardians of marginalised, at-risk youths or ex-offenders.

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