In a meeting brokered by Hope in Tottenham, the SOS Project’s Junior Smart, Street Doctors, and the Mayor of Haringey, have unveiled early plans for the largest gathering of Youth lifesavers. 

By Omar Alleyne-Lawler, Communications Manager

“I want it to be the biggest gathering of young people in any London Borough, ever”, explained Junior Smart of the SOS Project. The plan, discussed with the Mayor of Haringey and representatives from Street Doctors and Hope in Tottenham, is geared at bringing 10 of Haringey’s schools together in a mass event, turning students from pedestrians into potential life savers.

The event will expand the current reach of Street Doctors, currently working with over 300 learning providers to distribute material and training on what to do if someone encounters the victim of a knife attack.

Aimed at young people who presently make up many of a stabbing victims’ first contact, Street Doctors and the SOS Project hope to change the instinctual behaviour of just making videos of events on phones to share on social media to taking life-saving action.

(Back Row) Rev. John Wood MBE, Andrew Boateng, Christina Davis, Sgt Marjorie Musisi(MPS).
(Front Row) Omar Alleyne Lawler, Mayor Cllr Jogee, Megan Wimlett (Street Doctors)

As Junior Smart puts it, “when I ask if people know what to do if they see someone with a stab wound, very few hands go up.” These findings are mirrored in Hope in Tottenham’s Youth and Mentoring teams as well as Street Doctors who have been made aware of anxieties around not knowing what to do when faced with a potential stabbing victim.

As such, the three organisations aim to unify under a singular purpose and pool resources to stage an event in the borough with the blessing and support of Haringey’s newest Mayor, Cllr Adam Jogee.

Appointed for the 2021/2022 Municipal Year, Cllr Jogee is the youngest Mayor in a generation. Having grown up in Hornsey, he was elected to serve the ward in 2014 and was re-elected during the 2018 Local Elections.

Aware of how Youth violence impacts his constituency, Cllr Jogee was eager to throw his support towards the project and looks forward to more detailed discussions as the school year begins in September.

This served as one of two initiatives negotiated during the meeting. The second initiative, also brought forward by Junior Smart, looks to develop a ‘Safe Havens’ project which has been in decline over the last 10 years.

Safe Havens trains business operators within the area to create a protocol for workers who come across someone who is being chased by a potential attacker. Protecting them from the group or individual and keeping the victim away from the public, aims to save lives and break the cycle of violence, and bring in Police Officers who can quickly investigate instances of violence.

Taken together, these programs are intended to reduce instances of serious youth violence within the area, creating a blueprint that can be replicated across the capital’s 32 boroughs.

Hope in Tottenham would like to thank the Mayor of Haringey for his time and support. We look forward to working with all parties, including the SOS Project and Street Doctors.