London Citizens celebrate ‘CitySafe’ campaign


Today over 1000 young people from across London will come together at the O2 Academy Brixton for a stunning celebration concert for CitySafe – a London Citizens campaign to tackle crime and rebuild community relationships.

Hosted by Choice FM’s DJ Abrantee, the event will feature a stellar line-up of talented young entertainers including Vibe Squad, Mista Silva, Flava Kwamz, A Dot Comedian, DJ Afro B as well as the finest talent from London’s diverse communities.

The concert will celebrate the achievements of hundreds of young people who have spent the Olympic summer encouraging local shops and businesses to open their premises as CitySafe Havens – places of safety for people in immediate danger. These “CitySafe Champions” will receive awards from Dame Tessa Jowell MP, Chair of the CitySafe Foundation. Their work, one year on from the riots, has created over 50 new CitySafe Zones. The zones are made up of over 300 CitySafe Havens across the capital, including shops, libraries and even the office of Mayor Boris Johnson at City Hall.

Alongside the music, dance and comedy, the concert will launch a new CitySafe Map of London and a CitySafe Roadshow, to inspire young people in schools across the capital to take action for peace. The concert also marks the end of 100 Days of Peace – a London 2012 Inspire Mark initiative to promote peace for 50 days before and after the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Inspired by the tragic murder of teenager Jimmy Mizen in 2008, CitySafe is a community-led campaign from London Citizens to tackle crime and reconnect fractured neighbourhoods. The campaign sees teams of young people building relationships with local shopkeepers and business owners to open their premises as CitySafe Havens. These are places of safety for people in immediate danger; whose have staff have also pledged to report 100% of crime to the police.

Since 2008, several more of the communities represented by London Citizens have lost young people to violent crime, including Bob Litambola in Newham, Martin Dinnegan in Finsbury Park, David Idowu in Southwark, Godwin Lawson and, most recently Junior Nkwelle, who was murdered on the Loughborough Estate, less than a mile from Brixton Academy. In memory of these young people, the CitySafe campaign has provided a practical and effective way for communities to come together to overcome violence.

Francine Fernandes