Resetting how we support young people in Croydon town centre

We can now share the good news

We can now share the good news – CVA's bid for MyEnds funding has been successful! Read on.. 

Croydon has won the opportunity to make its town centre a safe place for young people to go, without fear of knife crime. The Mayor of London has announced that central Croydon will be one of the key hotspots targeted through his flagship MyEnds programme, providing us with £800,000 over two years to support young people at risk of violence and exploitation. We can now start spreading the word across schools and through social media – Croydon is uniting against violence on our streets. 

As a result of CVA’s successful bid, six of Croydon’s leading youth groups – Be Inspired, Reaching Higher, Palace for Life, Mentivity, P4YE and Play Place – will partner the Police, Croydon Council and the business sector in weeding out the root causes of youth violence. It will take new ways of working to succeed. So what is our plan? 

First and foremost this has to be a united effort. The Police, youth workers, Council officers, schools and local businesses all have to be pulling together and bearing equal weight. Secondly, we need the whole community behind us – local residents, faith groups, parents and politicians. And last, but not least, we need young people to play their full part and make this their project. 

Our first priorities will be to create a town centre team that coordinates the Police, youth work and social work interventions for every young person at risk; a local community plan against town centre violence that is reviewed every month; and a youth voice framework, assembled through a variety of different youth engagements. 

In announcing the award, Sadiq Khan said this investment will help communities to target interventions through youth work, mentoring and after-school activities in the neighbourhoods in greatest need of support. Lib Peck, Director of London’s VRU, agreed that MyEnds will put communities at the heart of solutions to tackling violence and providing opportunity for local people. Croydon’s Borough Commander Andy Brittain acknowledged the importance to community safety of grassroots organisations and the positive impact they have on the local community while Jason Perry, Croydon’s Mayor, celebrated the effectiveness of collaboration among the statutory, voluntary and community sectors – adding that MyEnds will provide significant advantages for the residents of Croydon by supporting communities, bringing positive change and creating better opportunities for young people. Jordan Ignatius from Reaching Higher spoke for all CVA’s partners in declaring his intention to maximise the skill and experience of our team whilst working together to achieve more with other great organisations. 

Resetting Youth Work 

Anthony King, our Community Network Chair, paid tribute to the brilliant work done over the past 3 years by our MyEnds partners. To put this in context – Croydon’s MyEnds project was born out of that transformative period in 2020 when the pandemic and George Floyd’s murder turned everything over, with the Council and Police leaderships joining us at CVA’s Resource Centre to innovate new, community-led programmes. Doing business differently and getting things done – from feeding the most vulnerable people in Croydon to changing the relationship between the Police and young people – that’s what defined Croydon’s Reset and gave a new currency to community action. Fast forward to today and Croydon is still being transformational - on devolution, through Local Community Partnerships that bring local people into planning and commissioning; on health and wellbeing through the Community Hubs promoting independence and breaking down service-dependency; and on youth work, through the positive activities our partners are delivering in schools, places of worship and on the streets.

Over the next two years we’ll be:  

  • Setting the bar for one-to-one youth work with the most at risk young people – and investing in the sports, arts and mentoring projects that put young people on the road to success 
  • Giving a platform to local communities - the people living and working every day in central Croydon 
  • Engaging young people on their terms and making their voices heard
  • Supporting grassroots groups with the closest community connections
  • Working hand-in-glove with the Council and the Police to share intelligence, pool our resources and provide young people and their families with wrap-around support services that are tailored to their needs 

You can find out more about MyEnds and our plans to reduce violence in the town centre by contacting Shalina Alabaksh at Croydon Voluntary Action -