In 2016, the Premier League and BBC Children in Need came together to create a joint programme that would aim to challenge the normalisation of violent behaviour amongst some young people, therefore breaking the cycle of violence within communities.
Burnley FC in the Community’s It’s Your Turf programme offers a package of mentoring and one-to-one (1:1) support which incorporates offending behaviour sessions and education. It includes specific work identified by both the referrer and the young person, with a holistic and tailored approach to tackling violence displayed by young people.
In partnership with local agencies such as the Community Safety Unit, Lancashire Social Care, Lancashire Youth Offending Service and Burnley Police teams, interventions are designed to bring an improvement in protective factors and a decrease in risk factors for individual young people engaged in the programme. The programme aims to prevent young people from entering the Criminal Justice System and ultimately reduce crime and reoffending levels across Burnley and East Lancashire.
Each young person receives a dedicated and personal mentor for up to 12 months support and potentially beyond should it be required.
Themes covered by the sessions include Weapons Awareness, Problem Solving Skills, Thinking Skills, Anger Management, Resilience, Racism and Stereotyping and E-Safety. Practitioners and agencies are welcome to discuss plans and help devise objectives for each young person to ensure an individual approach.
The initiative is free of charge to all referring agencies and participants. As a non-statutory partner, we offer a unique programme to engage young people and divert them away from offending.
As an extension of It’s Your Turf, BFCitC have also linked up with Newcastle United Foundation to bring together our respective Breaking the Cycle of Youth Violence programmes to create the Pen Pals Project, which you can read about here.