Being more aware of drugs and knife crime
On Thursday 27th June, Bishop’s hosted a drug and knife crime awareness workshop for all pupils including sixth form. Each year group got allocated a time during the day to watch the presentations created by two people affected by drugs and knife crime.
For year 7, the day started off with a touching story describing the happy life of Josh Hanson until his mum got a phone call in the early hours of the day. Unfortunately, Josh was 21 years old when he was involved in an unprovoked knife attack at a bar in London.
Josh’s mum, Tracy, and sister, Brooke, described how hurting one person affected lots of people in the community. She also emphasised how carrying a knife around is very wrong even for self-defence, as chances are that they can be used to attack you. There is no excuse at all to carrying a knife around outside. They now have a charity in Josh’s name supporting those who have been through the loss of a loved one because of knife crime.
Next, we listened to a presentation outlining the dangers of being in a gang and drug dealing. Gavin McKenna was a man who grew up in a dangerous area in East London. From a young age he witnessed domestic violence to his mother and himself from his father. As Gavin got older, he joined a gang to keep himself protected. He thought that to stay safe he had to show that he was bad as well and not scared. He soon also got into drug dealing. Breaking the stranglehold of gang culture, which had gripped Gavin firmly, the director and founder of Air Football, mentored and guided him back to living respectfully and safely. To help others from his experience, he now does sessions to expand on former knowledge on the issues affecting young people involved in gangs.
During break and lunch, we managed to catch up with the presenters and ask questions. Many other organisations came with stalls to raise awareness and tell people that they are there to help support those who require it.
Thank you to all the teachers who keep us safe every day and to those who organised the workshop. Also, thank you to all the speakers and members of the police department for making us aware and more conscious and conversant about issues happening right now.
Aliyeen Awan (7 Austen)