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With John Leech

Interactive schemes introduced to Barking and Dagenham to reduce crime

The ‘Right Box’ is one of five interactive workshops being offered (credit: Barking and Dagenham Council)

Five interactive schemes are being delivered in Barking and Dagenham in an attempt to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour.

Activities will include boxing, firefighter training and first aid, in the hope it will discourage individuals away from crime and reduce re-offending.

Performances will also take place in schools to highlight how local communities are impacted by illegal activities.

The workshops are a result of Barking and Dagenham Safer Neighbourhood Board securing £31,933 in funding from the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime.

Funding will also be spent increasing the number of Neighbourhood Watch groups across the borough.

Chair of the Barking and Dagenham Safer Neighbourhood Board, Steve Thompson said: “We are pleased to secure this funding for these important projects that will help us reach people in our borough in a variety of different ways.

“We remain committed to tackling crime and making sure everyone feels safe in Barking and Dagenham.”

A 12-week boxing programme called ‘Right Box’ is one of the schemes being delivered by the the Met Police in partnership with the Youth Offending Service Gangs Unit and schools.

It will offer tailored classes to those who have been involved in the criminal justice system.

Dan O’Sullivan, coach and secretary of Right Box, said: “We offer youngsters a chance to not only progress in the ring, but to earn nationally recognised qualifications that can help them in their careers.

“Boxing is more than just mindless fighting. It requires discipline, the ability to see the bigger picture, and provides a purpose that can lead to a pathway that takes people away from anti-social behaviour.”

The five schemes are funded until March 2020 and will receive £5,000 each.

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