Fight for Peace celebrates ten years in London
6/12/2017 – Fight for Peace members past and present joined staff, supporters, partners and guests in commemorating the ten year anniversary of the opening of the London Academy, at a ceremony held at the organisation’s Newham base. The event combined an awards ceremony, recognising the achievements of Fight for Peace members in 2017, with performances and special features highlighting the many successes and challenges of the last ten years, and the growth of the Academy.
During the ceremony, outstanding London Academy members were recognised through a series of awards covering combat sports, education, employment and youth leadership. In line with the unique nature of the occasion, an extra five awards, each representing one of Fight for Peace’s values, were also awarded and were presented by trustees of the organisation.
The ceremony was punctuated by a spoken word performance by London Academy member and poet Tofarati Sobodu, a congratulatory video message from Fight for Peace Ambassador Nicola Adams OBE and the first showing of a Laureus Sport for Good produced short film featuring Fight for Peace’s Anthony Ariri. A moving tribute was also delivered in remembrance of Karim Samms, a Fight for Peace member who was tragically killed in North Woolwich in 2017.
Fight for Peace Founder & Director Luke Dowdney MBE brought the ceremony to a close with an address which celebrated the great strides made by London Academy members and staff, thanking all those partners and supporters without whom Fight for Peace’s work would not be possible, and stressing the belief of the organisation that, in the face of great uncertainties in the world, there is a great deal more that unites us than divides us.
The end of the official ceremony saw those present enjoy a number of further attractions including a media hub presenting a 360 degree virtual reality Fight for Peace experience, a special film featuring long time members of the London Academy, a photo booth and an exhibition of portraits of Fight for Peace young people by artist Dolly Clew.
Head of Programmes at the London Academy, Jacob Whittingham underlined the importance of marking this milestone in Fight for Peace’s history:
“The Fight for Peace London Academy has grown dramatically over the past ten years, both in terms of the number of young people it serves and in the range of services and facilities it offers. Our ten year anniversary has given us the opportunity to look back with pride on the countless young people who have benefitted from the support given at Fight for Peace and have made transformational changes in their lives. It is also a moment to take stock of the great need for our work in London amid rising rates of crime and violence which young people are disproportionately affected by. Our resolve to continue working to overcome division and violence and strive for peace in our communities has never been stronger.”