National Lottery to support Fight for Peace to prevent youth violence across the UK

19/06/2018 – Fight for Peace has been awarded a National Lottery grant to help more community organisations across the UK prevent youth violence. The funding, which has been awarded by the Big Lottery Fund, will see Fight for Peace train organisations in its approach to violence prevention.

Over the next three years, Fight for Peace will provide training for up to 25 UK-based community organisations who will become members of the Fight for Peace Alliance – a global community of practice working together across 25 countries for peace. The funding will also allow the international organisation to increase the support it gives to existing Alliance members. By the end of the project, Fight for Peace will have trained over 50 Alliance members in the UK alone and over 170 worldwide.

Fight for Peace’s programmes and environment have had a profound impact on London Academy member Jake (not his real name). He said: “At the start, boxing was something practical for me. In the environment I grew up in, people were either part of a gang or a victim. The message that you can do something in your life that I got from Fight for Peace, and from the personal development sessions, kept me training at the Academy and kept me boxing. I love the positive message of Fight for Peace. This positive message, among so many negative things in life, was important for me.”

The National Lottery funding will also see Fight for Peace work with Laureus Sport for Good Foundation to expand and replicate its alternative education Pathways programme, which supports young people who have few or no qualifications to gain the skills they need to progress on to further education and training or to enter the job market.

Pathways offers formal education courses combined with personal development sessions, one-to-one mentoring, employability training, careers advice and progression support tailored to individual needs. 75% of Pathways participants at the Fight for Peace London Academy gained a qualification on the course in 2017. 82% of these young people were not in employment, education or training when they began the course.

Luke Dowdney, Founder & Director of Fight for Peace, said: “Our mission is to realise the potential of young people by working together with them to prevent violence in their communities. In order to reach as many young people as possible around the world, we created the Fight for Peace Alliance, which allows us to share our knowledge with other community based organisations working in violence prevention.

“So far we have trained over 150 organisations around the world and we are delighted that, thanks to the Big Lottery Fund grant, we are now able to expand our Alliance in the UK, supporting more organisations and young people in communities affected by crime and violence, while also furthering the support we offer to those already working with us.”

Meanwhile, Dawn Austwick, Chief Executive at the Big Lottery Fund, said: “I am delighted that National Lottery funding will support Fight for Peace to work directly with young people to help them to achieve their potential and create a positive future for themselves through the medium of boxing and martial arts.”