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Raleigh Bermuda: ‘recent violence calls us to action’

Raleigh Bermuda runs the Brave Programme providing antiviolence and advocacy education (Image supplied)

Youth charity Raleigh Bermuda is taking a stand against violence and urging young people to develop their resilience.

The charity, which provides antiviolence and advocacy education, issued a list of ways the community can address violence in the wake of the fatal stabbing of Zijae Jones at Horseshoe Bay in Southampton on Bermuda Day.

A spokeswoman for Raleigh said: “Through the Brave Programme, Raleigh provides antiviolence and advocacy education, helping young people develop survival life skills and a positive self-identity.

“These initiatives are crucial in deterring youth from toxic environments and gang affiliations, which have been a persistent issue in Bermuda, with alarming statistics highlighting the severity of gang-related violence.

“Raleigh Bermuda prioritises youth aged 14 to 24, a demographic at significant risk of gang recruitment, economic hardship and substance abuse.

“By offering comprehensive support including mentorship, education and advocacy, Raleigh aims to break cycles of intergenerational trauma and violence.

“Their programmes are grounded in experiential learning, enabling young people to apply their knowledge in real-life situations, fostering critical thinking, problem-solving and leadership skills.

“This recent violence calls us to action.

“It is a stark reminder of the work that lies ahead in creating a safe and nurturing environment for our youth. As a community, we must support initiatives that offer hope and tangible solutions.”

Raleigh Bermuda’s five ways to address violence

Support youth programmes: Engage with and support local organisations like Raleigh Bermuda that offer mentorship, educational programmes and safe havens for youth in at-risk environments. These programmes are crucial in providing alternatives to gang involvement and fostering positive development.

Foster open dialogue: Encourage conversations about violence, trauma and mental health within families, schools, churches and community groups. Providing safe spaces for youth to express their feelings and experiences can prevent isolation and promote healing.

Improve community-police relations: Host regular community meetings with local police officers to discuss concerns and build mutual trust. Implementing community policing strategies where officers actively engage with residents and participate in community activities can help bridge the gap and create a co-operative atmosphere.

Promote parental and family support: Offer workshops and resources to parents and families to equip them with the skills to support their children effectively. Strong family units can provide the stability and guidance that young people need to thrive.

Encourage civic engagement: Involve young people in community service projects and advocacy efforts. Engaging youth in positive, community-building activities instils a sense of responsibility and purpose, steering them away from negative influences.

The spokeswoman added: “In times of tragedy, we find strength in our unity and our shared commitment to a better future.

“Together, we can foster a generation of young leaders who are equipped to make informed decisions, manage their emotions and inspire positive change.”

Raleigh Bermuda gives presentations to companies and organisations on how to tackle violence in the community. Anyone interested in booking a presentation can contact info@raleigh.bm or call 333-5678.

For more information about the charity, visit www.raleigh.bm.

• It is The Royal Gazette’s policy not to allow comments on stories regarding criminal court cases. This is to prevent any statements being published that may jeopardise the outcome of that case.