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The ‘Ask Me About Gangs’ service deployed its first Ambassadors this autumn as part of the Borough Council’s gang prevention programme. The new service builds on two recent successes; a similar project promoted by Women’s Aid supporting victims of domestic violence, and the positive impact of the Streetbase peer support network run by young people, for young people, in Waltham Forest.

Ambassadors at a recent ward walk in Waltham Forest                                                                     

Thirty ‘Ask Me’ advisers are now working across the borough, with a further cohort due to go live in March, bringing the number of advisers in the team to forty. However, the ‘Ask Me’ Service is much more than an adult led outreach service looking to support young people and families at risk of gang or youth violence. The team behind ‘Ask Me’ , We Can Work It Out Ltd, has also built, with the help of young people in the borough, an online resource answering commonly asked questions about gang and county lines issues, allowing young people to ask further questions about issues that concern them and compiling an up to date, database of the key support services and organisations in Waltham Forest.

Jonathan Green, one of the Directors of ‘We Can Work It Out’, who are leading the work, said “We are delighted to be working with the Council to offer a positive alternative for young people in the borough. Its great to see so many people using the website and how the website and our Ambassadors have joined up so many of the organisations working so hard for young people in the borough”

Anyone interested in becoming an Ask Me Ambassador should be 18 years and over. You can express your interest via https://ask-me.org/ask-me-ambassador.

The FAQ section of the website can be found here -. https://ask-me.org/ask-me-faqs.

The online directory of community services working to reduce the impact of gang and knife related crime can be found at – https://ask-me.org/directory-category.