Damilola Taylor Trust inspires and empowers
As youth advisor to National Citizen Service (NCS), I could not be more delighted that NCS are part of a hugely impressive partnership collectively constructing the HOPE 2020 and it's legacy campaign. This campaign will include a national UK day of social action on December 7th.
On the 10th October 2012, I walked down my first ever red carpet into the O2 Arena, where I would go on to hear my name being announced as a Spirit of London award winner in front of over 10,000 people. So my first impression of the work of the Damilola Taylor Trust to inspire and empower young people was a pretty powerful one – as you’d imagine!
Two years on and only days after winning the BBC1’s The Voice, I took the time out to perform “You’ll never walk alone” in the Mayoral chamber, City Hall as part of the “One Big Community” project founded Jeremiah Emanuel, who was also awarded a Spirit of London award the year I got mine. The chamber was packed with young people from every corner of the capital along with representatives from most leading youth organisations, who were all, in some way, affected by serious youth violence. Despite all our different walks of life, interests and passions, It truly felt like one big community trying to tackle the one thing that brought us all together – Serious Youth Violence. With the creation of all these spaces, young people and community organisations were able to come together, and this led the conversation to create an all party Parliamentary commission into the root causes of youth violence
I was proud to have played a role in the construction of the commission by informing the MP commissioners as to how the narrative needs reframing. How poverty and social inequality need addressing first and foremost and how we must have children and young people are the centre of every thought, word and action. Four years of research and work I had the privilege to chaired the final report launch, an entirely youth led event which was called the final word.Now there are 18 Violence reduction units (VRU’s) around the country looking to emulate the success of Scotland by taking a public health and trauma informed approach to reducing violence, we hope the the report by the All party parliamentary commission can contribute and support the work of VRU’s in reducing violence
20years since Damilola tragically died, Richard Taylor has spent the last two decades being an incredible and inspirational ambassador for change. I support his work and the work of the Damilola Taylor Trust.
As youth advisor to National Citizen Service (NCS), I could not be more delighted that NCS are part of a hugely impressive partnership collectively constructing the HOPE 2020 and it’s legacy campaign. This campaign will include a national UK day of social action on December 7th. The aim is for it to become an annual day of hope that unites the youth sector in the country by championing young people and amplifying their voices and platforming the great and positive things they do in their communities – exactly the kind of young person Damilola was turning into.
My own journey is still in its formative stages but I’m really grateful for the part the Damilola Taylor Trust has played in it!