Our guiding principle is that those people affected by a problem are best to find the solutions to it.
We support young women affected by gangs and county line activity through our unique model that combines a solution focused and competence based approach with participatory principles and techniques.
By asking young women the right questions and offering an equal, transparent relationship we help them discover their own resilience and to develop the power to change their situation.
The Star Project is a specialist 12-session one-to-one service for gang-affected young women aged 16-24. We work alongside young women to explore:
- healthy relationships
- sexual violence and exploitation and other VAWG issues in the context of gangs
- risk for gang-affected young women
- anger, power and harm
We use our unique model of working with young women to create safe spaces and support them to achieve the changes they want in their lives and to develop skills and strategies to navigate risk. By keeping our work solution and future-focused, we keep our spaces safe for young women – they know we will not ask them to share information about their past or about their associates because this could create significant risks for them.
We have successfully worked with young women who have unique safeguarding and risk issues due to their gang-association, and who have complex needs and a history of non-engagement.
Referrals for The Star Project in Islington should be made through the Islington Integrated Gangs Team referral form – http://abianda.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Integrated-Gangs-Team-Referral-Form.docx
For Barnet, Enfield and Greenwich referrals, please call us for an informal conversation about the project and how we could support young women you are working with – our number is 020 7686 0520.
Rescue and Response is a three-year MOPAC funded project which will support young Londoners affected by county lines activity.
Abianda is delighted to be part of a consortium working with vulnerable children and young people affected by county lines across London, significantly growing our services across the capital. The service follows the Star Project model (see above).
Further information about the commissioning process and other project providers can be found here: http://abianda.com/rescue-and-response-county-lines-activity/
Referral Process and Criteria
Individuals must be London based and aged up to 25, and fulfil one or more of the following criteria:
- Known, or suspected, involvement in county line activity
- Known, or suspected, association with others who are involved in county line activity or being coerced and controlled
- Known, or suspected, experiences of CSE, Sexual violence and/or coercion, control or victimisation in the context of county line and/or gang activity
- Missing episodes suspected to be linked to any of the above
All referrals submitted via an online platform which can be reached by clicking on this link.
A 12-session group work programme for young women and girls in various settings, including: schools, pupil referral units, residential and secure units and prisons.
Using our solution focused and participatory approach, young women explore issues of violence against women and girls, in the context of peer groups and gangs, and the impact of gangs on, and the risk for, young women.
The young women develop the knowledge and skills they need to better navigate the risks they face in their lives, they develop a peer support network and gain work and life skills so they can make their own efforts to raise awareness about how young women are affected by gangs and what needs to be done to prevent it.
We work with gang-affected young women who have used our services to be young trainers themselves. Young women develop the knowledge & skills to co-deliver Abianda’s training packages – on a paid basis – so they can directly influence the way future services are delivered and inform professionals what works and what doesn’t when supporting young women.
Gang-affected young women tell us that they need legitimate, paid and professional opportunities so they can disrupt cycles of dependency on a pro-criminal life style and/or abusive and dangerous associates. Abianda Young Trainers deliver, or co-deliver, on all of our training packages. They also deliver in-house and bespoke training on request.
To discuss how our Young Trainers can support your practice, please contact them on: firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Young Women’s Business Advisory Group meets quarterly, and allows young women to influence and define how Abianda develops and what new opportunities are created for young women, both internally and externally.
Through the business advisory group, young women who have used our services have access to all aspects of the organisation including financial management and accounts, governance, business strategy and planning, fundraising, social media, marketing and PR, sales and income generation.
While working across all aspects of the organisation, young women develop business, leadership and administration skills that are transferable into other professional environments in support of their own career development.
We develop national projects to understand problems, and the solutions to them, from the perspective of young people who tend to have little, or no, influence on the policy and decisions that affect them. These are often partnership projects with academic institutions, and we bring the specialist skills in participatory and solution-focused approaches.
We are highly skilled at facilitating group work with young people who are typically ‘high risk and high vulnerability’ and in supporting them to influence the design of policy, systems and services.
Examples of our most recent work include a project called on Making Justice Work and these four films on gang associated sexual violence and exploitation.