London announces new sports fund to curb youth crime
LONDON, July 30 (Xinhua) -- London Mayor Sadiq Khan announced on Tuesday a new fund of 1.1 million pounds (1.34 million U.S. dollars) to back up sports projects for teens at risk of committing crimes.
Khan made the announcement at the inaugural meeting of his Serious Youth Violence Steering Group comprising sports experts from 20 organisations across London.
Highlighting the significance of sports, he said, "I have seen first-hand the unique power of sports to engage young people and help them turn their lives around."
The new steering group is part of a major package of work to help tackle causes of youth violence and knife crimes.
"The organisations that I have brought together today are already making a huge difference to the lives of thousands of young people in our city, which is why I am providing a further 1.1 million pounds of funding to help even more sports projects provide positive, meaningful activities to help young people make the right choices in life."
Serious violent incidents involving young Londoners are down by nearly 20 percent compared to last year, the mayor said, adding "but we cannot be complacent."
"We urgently need the government to reverse cuts to youth clubs, schools and local services -- or risk failing a generation," the mayor stressed.