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Dozens of the most vulnerable young people in Wolverhampton are receiving round the clock support from specialists in a bid to reduce serious youth violence.

As part of the initiative, professionals identify children and young people at risk of or involved in violence and provide support tailored to their specific needs.

The programme has identified up to 140 children and young people who they are seeking to work with and its team of professionals are currently supporting 37 of them.

The young people get 24/7 access to a team of professionals who can help with housing issues, access to education, ill health, and debt.

Research has shown that issues such as poverty, violence in the home and parents struggling with drug or alcohol addiction can lead to some young people being caught up in violence.

The project is known as the Community Initiative to Reduce Violence (CIRV) and aims to support young people affected by these issues to help create positive routes away from violence.

The programme launched in May 2023 and will operate until at least August 2025. It is jointly funded by the Home Office, the Youth Endowment Fund, and West Midlands Police and is subject to an evaluation by the University of Hull, University College London and University of Abertay.

Simon Foster, the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “There are many reasons why a young person might be affected by violence and in order to solve the problem we need to understand and respond to the root causes of it.

“That is because the prevention of violence will always be better than having to deal with the consequences of violence.

“I am delighted that we are seeing so many young people engaging with the programme in Wolverhampton. I trust this will bring about long-term positive change in our communities, support our children and save lives.”

A similar scheme is also in place in Coventry.

Delivery of the programme is overseen by the West Midlands Violence Reduction Partnership, a body which brings different agencies together including the police, health, probation, fire service and others to prevent violence across the region. Wolverhampton City Council are partners of the programme.

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