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CitySafe Haven set up in Kensal Rise by Queen’s Park Community School

PUBLISHED: 13:25 24 December 2014 | UPDATED: 14:08 24 December 2014

Left to right: Omar Hammoudan, Amber Paul, Finn Weldin, Deputy Mayor Cllr Lesley Jones, Paul Amuzie of Citizens UK

Left to right: Omar Hammoudan, Amber Paul, Finn Weldin, Deputy Mayor Cllr Lesley Jones, Paul Amuzie of Citizens UK

Archant

Pupils from Queen’s Park Community School (QPCS) have set up a CitySafe Haven in Kensal Rise to help protect youths from being victims of crime.

Left to right: Omar Hammoudan, Finn Weldin and Amber PaulLeft to right: Omar Hammoudan, Finn Weldin and Amber Paul

The nationwide scheme allows young people to seek refuge in a designated place such as a shop, business or even a church if they feel they could be in danger while out on the street.

Any premises involved in the scheme will display a recognisable purple logo indicating they are a CitySafe Haven.

Established by London Citizens (the UK’s largest independent alliance) in 2008, following the murder of 16-year-old Jimmy Mizen in South London, there are more than 500 havens across the UK.

In the last year, Amber Paul, Finn Weldin and Omar Hammoudan, year 13 students at the school in Ayleston Avenue, Brondesbury, have worked closely with Steve Cripps, their deputy head, and London Citiens, to create havens in Kensal Rise..

Jimmy Mizen bled to death in a bakery after a glass dish was thrown at him (Pic credit: PA)Jimmy Mizen bled to death in a bakery after a glass dish was thrown at him (Pic credit: PA)

The students have organised an action team (including parent volunteers from the school) to establish links with local shopkeepers and businesses in the Chamberlayne Road/Okehampton Road area after a school survey revealed students felt vulnerable in that neighbourhood.

So far 22 shops have signed up for the scheme with a total of 50 expected to take part by next February.

All havens have a rapid response telephone line to their local police station.

Amber said: “Since I moved here in 2013 I have been aware of occasional anti-social behaviour in the area. The opportunity given to me by the school to work with others to address this issue has proved to me that a community can really come together in a very positive way to tackle shared concerns.

“As a result of the CitySafe initiative, the school and the community have co-operated to an even greater extent to set up the zone and I believe that there will be ongoing further advantages as we continue to work in partnership in the future.”

Ismail, owner of Taste Café on Chamberlayne Road, has signed up to the scheme.

He said: “This is a wonderful initiative and something we fully support. It is great to be part of this scheme to promote community safety.”

For more information visit or citizensorg.uk.


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