An innovative new project that aims to keep young men out of prison has launched in Hammersmith & Fulham.
Charity Key4Life unveiled a new six-month ‘At Risk’ preventative programme for men aged 18-26 at Hammersmith Town Hall on Tuesday (13 March).
“It’s fantastic to be able to support this innovative programme which gives young men in our communities the opportunity to achieve their life goals and make a positive contribution,” said Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of Hammersmith & Fulham Council.
“We’re honoured to support this imaginative new project in Hammersmith.”
Key4Life’s mission is to reduce re-offending through its rehabilitation programme for young men who are in prison or at risk of going to prison.
H&F Council is supporting the charity by providing use of office space at 181 King Street in Hammersmith (next to the Amnesty International bookshop). Key4Life move in next week.
“H&F Council has been amazing,” said Eva Hamilton, founder of Key4Life.
“I met with Cllr Cowan just three months ago and now here we are opening a centre in Hammersmith. They’ve made this all happen. I’m so happy to be able to plant the first seed in H&F and help give a chance to the younger generation in the borough.”
Eva founded the charity in 2012 following the London riots in the summer of 2011.
Key4Life ambassador and case worker Anthon Dinnall said: “When I first got involved with Key4Life it truly opened my eyes. Previously, I had been mixing with the wrong crowd and I ended up in prison. I could even see my house from my prison cell window. It was tough.
“I had never had a legitimate job. But with Key4Life, I realised that I could hold down a real job. Now I’m committed to helping others get their lives on track and to take advantage of the amazing opportunities with Key4life.”
The six-month ‘At Risk’ preventative programme is based on a seven-step model to help develop emotional resilience and employability skills, while offering on-going support.
Initially, the young men will reflect on the personal issues in their lives – such as anger issues – through sport, nature and music. They will then be assigned a mentor who will help them prepare for the working world.
Each young man will then go on a three-day work taster at a business that matches their interests, as well as further training and support finding a full-time job. Eventually the young men will join the Key4Life family and help support future participants.
If you want to support the ‘At Risk’ programme in Hammersmith & Fulham, email: melissa.koker@Key4Life.org.uk.