Case study: Fearless
Fearless is part of the charity Crimestoppers and is funded by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, and the Home Office, as part of a wider project aimed at tackling serious and organised crime across Gwent.
The Fearless team have been working across Gwent since January 2019 and have delivered sessions on knife crime, child exploitation and drug running to almost 14,000 young people.
Sessions are designed to give young people the education and confidence to recognise these issues within their friendship groups and communities, but also to give them the knowledge and confidence to report them.
You can report crime anonymously via the Fearless website.
Fearless workers have also delivered training to more than 230 professionals, parents and carers on spotting the signs of organised crime.
Fearless worker Callum was asked by a school to deliver sessions on county lines and knife crime due to concerns raised about pupils’ vulnerability to organised crime, and the risk of them carrying knives and drug running.
Callum delivered sessions to small groups of year eight to ten pupils, asking a series of questions and statements before and afterwards.
Before each session he asked:
Carrying a knife makes me feel safer?
Almost all of the young people, 90 per cent, agreed with this statement with ten per cent unsure.
One young person stated "yes you are 100 per cent safer and I would carry one to be safe.”
I would consider carrying a knife/weapon if I knew others were carrying?
Again 90 per cent agreed with this statement with ten per cent unsure.
I know the different laws on carrying a knife/offensive weapon?
All of the young people disagreed with this statement.
During the session, Calum covered: an introduction to Fearless, laws, misconceptions, choices and consequences of knife crime, and the different ways of seeking support and speaking out about crime.
After the session the same young people were asked the same three questions. One hundred per cent of the young people had changed their views for all statements.
One young person said: "After knowing all that info, no way would I carry a knife now.”
After the Fearless sessions pupils had a much better knowledge and awareness about knife crime. They felt they understood the consequences of knife crime and were able to make safer, more informed decisions.
You can find out more about the work of Fearless in Gwent on the Fearless website.