Hundreds at Brixton Academy for safe haven celebration

By Juliana Lucas

Over 1,000 students came to Brixton Academy last week to watch other young performers at a concert to celebrate 50 new safe zones across London.

CitySafe, chaired by Dame Tessa Jowell, MP for Dulwich and West Norwood is a community-led campaign to tackle crime by providing safe havens for young people.

The initiative, which was inspired following the murder of 16-year-old schoolboy, Jimmy Mizen in 2008 now has over 300 zones across London.

Mizen, from Lee Green, southeast London described as a gentle giant turned down a fight with his attacker.

London Citizens and the Met Police launch a new safe haven

Several others young people who have lost their lives to violent crime includes Junior Nkwelle, from Loughborough estate, Brixton.

The CitySafe scheme was thought up by the community organisation London Citizens as a response to keep young people safe.

The event which took place on Wednesday October 24  was hosted by Choice FM’s DJ Abranteee, who promised to visit as many secondary school has he could.

The famous Afrobeat DJ who made reference to Mizen’s death said, “If there were CitySafe around Damilola Taylor wouldn’t have died. He would have had somewhere to go”

The campaign sees teams of young people building relationships with their local shopkeepers who in turn provide their business as a safe haven. It aims to reconnect fractured neighbourhoods.

Dame Jowell, whose constituency includes part of Brixton, recently donated £100,00o to the project said: “CitySafe will change the nature of London by making communities more resilient, more assertive and cleared of not just of their power but also their responsibility. This is a very purposeful way to build the strengths and resilience of communities ad shows that civil society is strong where the stat, through local government or the police is supportive and engaged.”