Sported backs the Kiyan Prince Foundation
The Kiyan Prince Foundation (KPF) is set to launch a new youth empowerment project aimed at educating young people in London about the devastating consequences of knife and gang crime. The charity was founded by professional boxer Mark Prince following the tragic death of his 15 year old son Kiyan in May 2006. A talented footballer who played for QPR’s under 16’s team, Kiyan was stabbed outside his school gates in Edgware as he tried to prevent another young person picking on his friend.
The ‘I Have A Dream’ programme will be run my Mark Prince and combine intensive boxing training sessions with weekly one hour workshops on subjects such as gang life, knife crime, and drug and substance abuse. The project is aimed at developing young people, who are at a high-risk of becoming involved in knife crime and aged between 16-25, by empowering them to make better decisions in their lives and to become positive role models within their communities.
KPF will train young people on the programme to become peer mentors, thereby creating a safe ‘family’ environment where young people can confide in each other and share their problems. Young people will be referred to the scheme through the Foundation’s partnership with local schools, social services and youth offending teams, in addition to KPF running regular community outreach activities.
The ‘I Have A Dream’ programme has been launched thanks to financial backing and business support from Sport for Development charity, Sported. The charity, which is dedicated to supporting the growth of community sport groups, has been working closely with the KPF over the last 12 months. One of Sported’s team of volunteer business mentors has been offering their professional expertise, free of charge, to Mark, in order to help him expand the charity’s work and ready the Foundation for its next phase of development.
To raise money for the Kiyan Prince Foundation, Mark Prince made his professional come-back in in 2014, stepping back into the ring after 14 years in retirement.
Mark Prince, Founder and Executive Director of Kiyan Prince Foundation, said: “The pain and utter devastation of losing a child to knife crime is something no parent should have to endure. Yet, nearly eight years after Kiyan’s tragic passing, there are still young people being murdered on our streets. If we want to stop this epidemic, we need to start educating young people about the consequences of knife crime. We need to engage them, help them make more informed choices and show there’s a life outside of gang culture.”
Chris Grant, Chief Executive of Sported, commented: “Community sport groups, like the Kiyan Prince Foundation, play a vital role in engaging young people whose needs are too often ignored by mainstream society. If we are serious about tackling knife crime, gang culture and other pressing social issues, we need to focus on programmes that address the growing inequalities in our society and begin treating the causes, not the symptoms.”