Boris Johnson calls for more mentors in Brent

Mayors new scheme hopes to tackle rising youth crime and delinquency

LONDON’S Mayor Boris Johnson dropped into Brent to launch his new mentoring scheme last night (Wednesday) and hear what is being done to fight youth crime.

The Mayor encouraged community leaders and concerned parents at the impressive Capital City Academy, in Doyle Gardens, Willesden, to get involved in the scheme as a way of helping troubled teenagers away from violent crime and back into education and work calling on businesses to take on more apprentices.

However one well spoken youth criticised the Mayor for the lack of young people in the audience who was promptly signed up to join his youth outreach team.

Panellists and established Brent mentors Kelly Oyebola, director of Potential Mentoring, a mentoring service for troubled youths, and Patrick Jacob, chair of Not Another Drop set up to fight gang and knife crime, said part of the problem was not identifying kids being left behind at school due to class sizes and poor teaching.

The audience heard how kids often acted aggressively in class to cover up their inability to read and write, leading to expulsion from school and a life of crime.

A lack of role models was also blamed for young boys going off the rails whether it is absent fathers or successful members of the community not being celebrated.