Young people are being targeted in a new campaign to encourage them to speak up about violence.

The initiative has been launched by – the youth service of the Crimestoppers charity – and offers youngsters a way to report information or suspicions anonymously.

As part of the campaign, funded by The Percy Hoskins Trust, all secondary schools in the local area will be able to access a series of short podcasts in which young people talk about their own first-hand experiences of the pain and destruction caused by violence and those who decide to carry weapons.

Lyndsay McDade, youth projects co-ordinator at Crimestoppers, said: “The public health approach to violence recognises that it is a preventable problem requiring a society-wide response.

“That’s why it’s so important to encourage young people to know more about the causes and impact whilst helping them play their part in finding solutions.

“We’re encouraging young people to be supported to talk about violence.

“This could be exploring the contributory causes of violence, challenging the dangerous myths that exist around weapon possession or making the decision to speak up with information to our charity one hundred per cent anonymously.

“If you know or suspect someone who is responsible for violent crime or regularly carries a weapon, you don’t need to put up with it.

“Our charity gives you a safe, tangible way to make a positive difference.”

The campaign is also being backed by senior police officers.

Chief Superintendent Mark Sutherland said: “The overwhelming majority of young people do not carry weapons.

For those who do, their motivations are complex and multifaceted and our primary objective is to remove any weapons from their possession to protect them from harm.

“Access to knives is easier than other weapons and this reduces barriers to possession which policing cannot solve in isolation.

“Legislation is making it more challenging for anyone under the age of 18 to obtain bladed instruments from commercial suppliers but the support of parents and guardians in preventing access to knives in a domestic setting would certainly help the collective effort to safeguard our young people from the dangers associated with weapons carrying.”

For more information about the campaign, visit