More than £9million is being invested into a flagship programme to tackle youth violence in London.
The MyEnds project has helped 3,100 children offering them positive role models in Brent, Croydon, Hackney, Haringey, Lambeth, Newham, Southwark and Tower Hamlets.
Funding from London’s Violence Reduction Unit over the next three years will allow more after-school activities and mentoring sessions to be delivered.
One area the VRU is keen to tackle is harm caused by social media.
City Hall data reveals during lockdown, 70 per cent of under-18s saw content that was either violent or explicit, including videos of suicide, nudity and extreme violence.
Mayor Sadiq Khan on Tuesday visited the MyEnds in Lambeth working with communities on the Angell Town, Loughborough and Moorlands estates in south London.
He got to see the Ebony Horse Club, which uses horse-riding to steer children from violence, and mentoring at the Marcus Lipton Youth Club, Brixton.
Mr Khan said: “Tackling violence and making our city safer is my number one priority.
“My approach in London has been to be both tough on violence and tough on the complex causes of violence.
“I’ve supported the police by putting 1,300 more officers on our streets to help suppress violence in local areas and have helped to elevate police officer numbers to their highest levels in history.
“My VRU is working to support and provide positive opportunities for 70,000 young Londoners.
“Thanks to our approach, we have seen some progress. There is still a lot more to do, but London is now bucking the national trend, with violent crime falling since 2016.”
Lib Peck, Director of London’s VRU, added: “We believe violence is preventable, not inevitable. We listen to local people and work alongside communities to deliver change, reduce violence and support young people and families.
“Our eight MyEnds groups are beginning to deliver important interventions.”
Margaret Pierre, co-CEO of ML Community Enterprise at the Marcus Lipton Youth Centre, said: “My Ends has given us the opportunity to develop a new approach to address serious violence in the Coldharbour Area where local organisations, the community and statutory partners can work together and begin to tackle it.”