Matt Corbett

Blog: Hard calls save lives

Matt Corbett, Director of the L&Q Foundation
Published on 20/04/2021

Violence affecting young people, especially in London, is a problem with no easy solution. It is also a problem that we cannot ignore.

That is why we are supporting Hard Calls Save Lives, a campaign for change in London, led by mothers who have lost their sons to knife crime. Last year alone, 73 lives were lost to knife crime – that’s 1 every 5 days.

Working with Crimestoppers, an independent charity that gives people the chance to report anonymously, the campaign urges us all to speak up and make the call.

It can be daunting to pass on information about knife crime. You might be unsure what information is useful or what happens to it. It may feel like a hard call, but your call could stop someone else’s son or daughter being killed.

The smallest details may help. It doesn’t need to be the name of offenders. If there’s been a violent incident in your area, you may remember things about that day. Small details such as the time, if you noticed a vehicle that isn’t from the area, or if you’ve noticed anyone acting suspiciously; all these details will help build up a picture of what happened and contribute to a wider investigation.

You know your area and if things don’t feel right to you, they probably aren’t. And even if you think something feels insignificant, the information from your call could form the last piece of the puzzle.

Call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or report online.

To find out more, visit the Hard Calls Save Lives website.


How L&Q is tackling knife crime

Save London Lives

We are committed to building safe, secure and sustainable communities with our residents. In 2019, the L&Q Foundation provided a £600,000 grant to fund the third round of the Evening Standard Dispossessed Fund’s Save London Lives programme. The funding supported grassroots projects and increased the impact and resilience of organisations working to reduce violence among young people across London.

The range of projects funded varied from youth work to family support, anti-knife workshops in schools to trauma training for staff at a youth centre. All projects benefitted from a package of capacity building support, including training days on subjects such as Evaluation, Fundraising, Safeguarding, and further networking opportunities.


The Lewis Initiative – Place Maker Counties

Place Makers Counties offers small grants to benefit communities where we’re developing or improving homes outside of London. It aims to develop and support local, community led and place-based projects that meet the needs of the local area, It aims to develop and support local, community led and place-based projects that meet the needs of the local area, such as the Lewis Initiative by the Junior Filmmakers.

Based in Milton Keynes, the Junior Filmmakers have developed The Lewis Initiative in memory of Lewis Wenman, a 17-year-old who died from a stab wound to the chest in the city in November 2020. In Milton Keynes recently, there has been a rise in gangs, drugs, and knife crime. Although not dissimilar to issues in London, local organisations know their communities and how best to tackle these kinds of challenges.

The Lewis Initiative worked with young people from local primary and secondary schools to produce films with the theme ‘Knives Ruin Lives’, designed to encourage thought and change. The first film camp took place during the Easter 2021 school holidays. The films will be premiered to community leaders, schools and toured to local school assemblies, followed by talks from police, experts and people impacted by knife crime.

The L&Q Foundation will continue to work in partnership with our communities to tackle knife crime and youth violence, as a priority.