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Sports clubs back anti-violence drive

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United front: Neil Paynter, third left, the president of St George’s Cricket Club, and Desmond Crockwell, centre. Also pictured from left are youth-team player Isaiah Greaves, league captain Onias Bascome, club vice-president Mishael Paynter, executive member Alan Outerbridge Jr and league player Nzari Paynter (Photograph supplied)

Sports clubs have thrown their support behind an anti-violence drive, its organiser said yesterday.

Desmond Crockwell said that his Clubs Against Violence campaign had been backed by several East End clubs, including St David’s County Cricket Club, St George’s Cricket Club, Bailey’s Bay Cricket Club and Hamilton Parish Workman’s Club.

Mr Crockwell, chief editor of anti-violence magazine Visionz, said that talks continued to bring other clubs on board.

Copies of his magazine will be distributed to club customers as part of the link-up and posters will also be displayed on club premises.

Mr Crockwell said that much of Bermuda’s antisocial behaviour was connected to sports clubs.

He added: “It is our mandate to promote the anti-violence message where and when we can.

“Some of the articles in our magazines are from people who have been part of the antisocial crowd and/or come from the sports clubs and can relate to many of our young people who partake in these violent acts.

“We are excited to be partnering with participating clubs and look forward to collaborating with other clubs to push the anti-violence message.

“We have been in talks with many of these clubs and feel optimistic that they understand the importance of what we are doing and look forward to their participation.”

Neil Paynter, the president of St George’s CC, said he had known Mr Crockwell for years and that he was a respected figure in the East End.

He added: “Once he came to us we just felt like the initiative he was doing was a positive one and we had no problem supporting it.”

Mr Paynter said that club’s mandate was to “serve the community with positive programmes and activities”.

He added that the decision to back the campaign was an easy one and showed the club’s desire to cut violence.

Mr Paynter said: “We do support programmes that bring positive people within our organisation.”

Arrim Perinchief, the Bailey’s Bay president, said that the club supported any programme designed to tackle violence.

He added that the club had always had a close relationship with Mr Crockwell.

Mr Perinchief said: “Whenever he reaches out to us, we just try and lend whatever support we can.”

Samantha Robinson, the St David’s president, said: “We think that what he’s doing is a good thing.”

Ms Robinson added that Mr Crockwell was a strong promoter of Bermuda’s youngsters.

She added: “He’s got a positive message.”

Nigel Burgess, the secretary at HPWC, said that Mr Crockwell had spearheaded a “positive movement in the community”.

He added that the club had been approached to take part in the campaign last week.

Mr Burgess said: “We were quick to act on that.”

He said that the club would host anti-violence forums as part of the partnership.

Working together: Damon Edwards, an executive member at Bailey’s Bay Cricket Club, and Desmond Crockwell (Photograph supplied)
Samantha Robinson, the president of St David’s County Cricket Club, and Desmond Crockwell (Photograph supplied)