Antisocial behaviour wrecks lives!
That’s the message from a Police and Crime Commissioner-funded summer project run by north of England charity Nepacs.
BEEhave Yourself saw young people designing and creating a marketing campaign showing their peers just what kind of personal, social and financial impact ASB and crime has on lives.
As a starting point, the youngsters, aged 13 to 16, looked at the emotional and practical toll of crime and ASB on their own lives as well as their own attitudes to them.
Many of the young people, drawn from Nepacs’ Bee Yourself youth project, have already been impacted by criminal behaviour.
A number of them have a close relative in prison. The experience of having a parent or loved one in prison can have a significant impact on young people’s mental wellbeing, relationships, educational attainment and behaviour.
A child’s eye view
The campaign, to be released across Cleveland this month, features Instagram posts, meme-type images, animated videos and voice-overs, using Nepacs’ distinctive bee motif.
Its messages take a “child’s eye view” and are drawn from the young people’s own experiences, giving the campaign greater impact and credibility among its target teen audience.
The campaign will show that antisocial behaviour puts yourself and other people at risk as well as potentially damaging future employment prospects and the chance of being able to rent your own home.
Steve Turner, Cleveland PCC, said: “The fact that this campaign is designed by teenagers for teenagers makes it even more powerful and targets our key audiences directly.
“Many of these young people have personal experience of the harmful effects of antisocial and criminal behaviour so their messages are authentic and authoritative.
“I hope those messages hit home when they rolled out in school as part of Nepacs’ education programme and succeed in helping young people to see that antisocial behaviour is a waste of their time – and their lives.”
Emma Price, Nepacs’ Children and Young Peoples Service Manager, said: “At their age, young people crave excitement and the adrenaline rush, which comes with taking risks.
“We want young people to understand that their bodies crave the adrenaline, which comes with ASB, but we want them to take risks safely by taking part in other activities.”
Work over the summer was backed by Cleveland Police and Crime Commissioner Steve Turner, who gave a £1,500 grant from his ASB Fund to support the project.
As well as the marketing campaign, young people also produced materials to be included in Nepacs’ ‘bee-themed’ toolkit.
The resource goes out to schools across the north east and raises awareness of the issues faced by people impacted by crime.