COMMUNITY organisations in Salford shared the positive impact of a programme led by the Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) on young people and communities in Salford during a visit from the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, and Deputy Mayor Bev Hughes today (Thursday 21 July).  

In the eight months since the launch of the programme, over 150 young people have been supported through the community-led programme, which focuses on reducing antisocial behaviour, violence and hate crime, improving community cohesion, and providing opportunities for young people.

In November 2021, seven organisations in Salford were awarded funding from Greater Manchester’s VRU. Four voluntary, community, and social enterprise (VCSE) organisations received grants to focus on hate crime and cohesion – Odd Arts, Swinton Lions RLFC, Oasis Community Hub, and Stay Safe Manchester. And four other organisations – Oasis Community Hub, Foundation 92, Manchester United Foundation, and Salford Community Leisure – formed a partnership to work together to reduce violence and provide opportunities in the local community, led by Salford Foundation.

During the visit to Oasis Community Hub Media City today, Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester said: “It was fantastic to meet with people from organisations in Salford who are making a real impact on the lives of young people. We know that the knowledge of how to deal with violence in any community lies within the community, so it is vitally important for us to work together.

“The community-led approach to violence reduction strengthens relationships and trust between the community and partners from the voluntary and statutory sectors, improves how information is shared and is used to inform decision making, and creates opportunities for integrated working. The successes of the community-led programme in Salford, clearly demonstrate the strength of the community-led approach to violence reduction we have adopted in Greater Manchester.”

Bev Hughes, Greater Manchester’s Deputy Mayor for policing, crime, criminal justice, and fire, said: “Hearing first-hand how the community-led programme has benefited young people in Salford has been fantastic. The strength of our approach to reducing violence relies heavily on multiple partners, and opportunities like today to bring partners, community members and young people together highlight what can be achieved by working together.

“I am looking forward to seeing the impact that the partnership continues to have on local young people.”

Phil East, Chief Executive at Salford Foundation, said: “Forming this partnership has enabled a range of local organisations who really understand the local community to work collaboratively with young people. This kind of joined-up and community-led approach to tackling youth violence is demonstrating its effectiveness and its potential to make an even bigger difference to this complex social issue.”

Salford was the third borough in the city-region to receive funding from the VRU as part of its £600,000 investment in community-led programmes, outlined in Greater Manchester’s Serious Violence Action Plan. The community-led programmes enable the VRU to work closely with communities to understand the strengths, challenges, and needs of the community and determine how local investments will be made.

A young person supported by the programme, said: “I’m not getting into trouble on my estate anymore. I’m going to school loads more than I was. Things are better at home too. I’ve really enjoyed the mentoring sessions and doing things I’ve never done before.”

Community-led programmes are currently running in Manchester, Bolton, Salford, Bury, Oldham, and Tameside, with plans to launch programmes in the remaining four boroughs of Greater Manchester by the end of the year.

To find out more about the work of the Greater Manchester VRU visit Homepage - Greater Manchester Violence Reduction Unit (gmvru.co.uk) or follow @gm_vru on Twitter and Instagram.


Article Published: 22/07/2022 09:20 AM