“LET’S TALK” Knife Crime Discussion Forums

Community TV Trust won funding from The Peckham Settlement to run “LET’S TALK”, a project on knife crime, in early 2019. The programme of discussion forums for young people to speak at has now concluded. Work on production of a documentary film and two performance films to tour Southwark and south London has begun. These will certainly stimulate thought and debate and inspire other young people.

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Here is a short film introducing the Southwark world of knife crime as registered by its young people across the LET’S TALK Forums:

The 2019 series of Discussion Forums started at Surrey Square Primary School in January to listen to young people aged ten or eleven; moved to Bermondsey’s Bede Youth Adventure Project in early February to hear from 13 year olds, and in late February met 16 year old students at Harris Academy Peckham in central Southwark. LET’S TALK returned to HAP for the fifth and final Forum in early July.

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The key ingredient throughout was the Panel of professionals invited by Community TV Trust to attend the Forums and listen to how young people described their world. The Panel convened in March to deliberate over what they had heard and consider what actions to take.

Panel members at the final Forum comprised a Deputy Director of Policy and the Ministry of Justice, a QC who sits as a Judge, a youth pastor, a Stop & Search consultant,  a music teacher and an academic, with Chris Haydon, Director of Community TV Trust as chair. All spoke about their ideas and actions:

1  bereaved parents of a recent Harris pupil were enabled to meet the Prime Minister as a direct result of two panel members speaking together;

2  an academic studying the policing of Southwark suggested a controversial idea* – no longer using the Police to combat knife crime … but all other agencies instead should get involved, namely parents schools youth services and so on;

3  Stop & Search required both parties to learn to be more respectful of each other, Police officers as much as young people;

4  Educating Parents was requested by Harris students and CTVT has agreed to host a website and YouTube channel with students driving content generation. CTVT will seek funding for this expansion of LET’S TALK;

5  Young people were urged to communicate more with the Police;

6  All were urged to provide care for victims, and this included families of perpetrators as well as of the victims. One Panel member spoke of her personal loss through a knife crime and her sorrow contemplating the convicted killer’s family who effectively lost their son too, as he will spend the next twenty five years in prison.

Community TV Trust wishes to thank its partners for this successful first year of discussion forums: they are Surrey Square Primary School, Bede Youth Adventure Project, Harris Academy Peckham. Each partner played host to one of the series of Forums.

*CTVT will publish this proposal in full as soon as possible.

2018 Autumn Update

CTVT won funding from The Peckham Settlement for a knife crime project that focuses on discussion forums for young people and a documentary film to be taken into schools. The discussion forums will be attended by 30+ students who will be listened to by a ‘panel’ of 12 or more professionals from across Government, Police, education, community liaison, faith, the arts, sport, youth work, and so on. The first event is scheduled for 31st October at 6pm, with a central Southwark venue to be announced. The job of the ‘panel’ will be to listen hard across the four events and then come together on a fifth occasion to reflect on all that they will have heard, to share insights and ideas, to consider whether there are clear action points emerging from the process. Themes for these open discussion forums will be:

Home Life & Parenting;

Peer Pressure, Drugs & Gangs;

Social Life, Sex & Self Esteem

Sport & Wellbeing.

On 25th October there will be a screening at Peckhamplex of Chris Haydon/CTVT’s latest documentary commission, a film about Millwall FC and its past fifty years. The story is told predominantly by older black fans and black players. The one-hour film will soon be available online via this website. It was directed/edited by Chris and produced by Ole Jensen for Bede House. Also for Bede House will be a new promotional video currently in post production.

Meanwhile, CTVT continues to support Freewheelers Theatre & Media Company with its filmmaking expertise, with a Film Night coming up on 7th November at Dorking Halls in Dorking. At this event films will be shown from the two weekly workshops running in Leatherhead and Cobham for disabled adults: in the line up will be a half hour drama and three songs marking the centenary of the 1918 Armistice ending the First World War.

UK Comedy Hit: Transport & The Disabled

Chris Hogg is witty, musical and pro-active. He lives in Cheam and travels to Leatherhead to attend workshops with Freewheelers Theatre & Media Company. Or at least that’s the idea.

In reality, staff at Cheam disappear at midday leaving no-one to manage Chris’s travel. He uses a power wheelchair and without staff is left stranded. His activities are therefore cut short or cut altogether.

He plans to produce a satire on Southern Rail, their strikes and cynicism, but when life is stranger than fiction, you can be left struggling. The Media Group at Freewheelers has explored “W1A”, Monty Python and the whole history of absurdist comedy for a style that suits the material. First of all though, Chris has to find a way of travelling to Leatherhead.

Community Channel – funding drive

The national platform that is the Community Channel via crowdfunding has found a way forward, not least due to Sky giving 50% of the target figure of £300,000. Congratulations to Caroline Diehl and her team!

A Community Channel owned by the community offers a tantalising prospect: local media organisations together with local radio/TV stations could create a network across the country that feed a national platform as well as their own individual outlet. Campaigning anyone?

When you consider the disconnect shown by the Labour Party’s current difficulties over working with a leader whose popular mandate is not mirrored by the Parliamentary Labour Party, social media plus local broadcasting becomes a real player for change.

 

Southwark.TV Report available for download

“An open-minded, fun and accessible community ‘TV’ service, run as a forum for debate, the supply of information and promotion of local initiatives, talent and needs, has a vital role to play in multi-cultural, multi-faith C21st century Britain. Digital/cable TV and new media will be playing their part in urban regeneration and social cohesion.”

Community TV Trust from its launch in 1999 sought ways to innovative in community media. How might engagement be achieved?

Southwark.TV – a ‘horizontal’ community project – ran from a pilot in early 2003 to 2014 when the site was archived. You can find it under the CTVT Projects menu or click HERE to read it. Once you have read the report you can also browse the Southwark.TV website from HERE

It foresaw the rise of social media and online activity, shifting away from mainstream media to portable/mobile devices and citizen journalism.