Saturday the 16th of January at The Valley saw a return to the Street Violence Ruins Lives (SVRL) campaign, a dedicated annual fixture to remember and celebrate the life of a devoted Charlton fan, Rob Knox.
Rob lost his life after being fatally stabbed in Sidcup nearly 8 years ago. Ever since, both Charlton Athletic Football Club and Charlton Athletic Community Trust (CACT) have embraced the yearly fixture to raise awareness for an event that could have been avoided, but unfortunately still occurs regularly.
Working closely with the Rob Knox Foundation and Charlton Athletic Football Club, all involved deemed it another successful day for the cause.
Josh Legge, 15 from Bexley, was recognised for his dedication to encouraging other young people to stand up to bullying and violence.
Bexleyheath Academy student Josh regularly volunteers at the Thamesmead youth hub for the London Borough of Bexley and was recognised after being nominated by their Director of Children’s Services, Jacky Tiotto for services to his local community.
Outgoing Crime Reduction Manager Nick Darvill said “It was yet another day to be proud of as we remembered Rob’s life and celebrated the positive choices young people are making to reject violence.”
“It was a special day for me in particular as it is my last SVRL day working for CACT. It’s great to reflect on how far the initiative has come in 9 years. I would like to thank all my colleagues and the Charlton fans for making the day such a success.”
Street Violence Ruins Lives Campaign
The Street Violence Ruins Lives campaign raises awareness of the serious issue of weapons related violence amongst young people through the experiences of the Knox family.
The Trust and the Knox family joined forces shortly after Rob’s death to deliver an education programme throughout Greenwich and Bexley to teach young people of the dangers of carrying a knife and belonging to a gang.
The campaign works at three levels:
- Through awareness programmes in schools;
- On estates based programmes where young people are identified as being involved in crime or are at risk of being so; and
- Through targeted specialist work with repeat offenders who are at risk of custodial sentences or who have served a sentence but have been released on licence
The programme has also seen significant numbers of young people getting back into school and gain employment opportunities. This has been capable through effective intervention by using diversionary activity in not just football and sport, but mentoring to promote positive change.
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