Leamington based anti-knife crime campaign looks to start football team to spread its message
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Anti-knife crime campaign Change Your Life Put Down Your Knife wants to recruit footballers from in and around Leamington to play for a team which will help promote its message.
Players can be aged from 16 to 25 and would play in a Sunday league under the name Change Your Life Put Down Your Knife FC.
Benjamin Spann, founder of the campaign group, said “Part of our prevention programme is creating more youth facilities so this is right up our street.
"We are already involved with a few local football teams sponsoring them and providing them with sports equipment.
"A few weeks ago I was approached by a chap who wanted to start a new football team and thought it would be a great idea to help create awareness to use our campaign name.
"After a few discussions with him I decided this would be a great idea if we could direct at solely at the most vulnerable age group to be effected by County Lines.
"We will provide the equipment and kits needed but the team will be purely in the hands of the new manager.
"I am currently ran off my feet working full time and running the campaign, which has really started to pick up.
"I have found myself in meetings every day for the last four weeks which a positive because it means we are now being noticed within our community."
The campaign is also running free pop-up boxing sessions for youngsters aged from ten to 16 at gyms and other venues around the town.
Off of the back of this, Benjamin has filmed a a short documentary that’s to be used in schools about how boxing can be used to help as a deterrent to stop young people getting involved with county lines drugs gangs.
The filming took place at Leamington Amateur Boxing Club in Lillington and included interviews with some of the youngsters who have been training there.
It was filmed by a company called FBI productions ran by strong man Stu Goldcrusher who appeared on Britain’s Got Talent a few years back.
For more about the campaign find Change Your Life, Put Down Your Knife! on Facebook.