Youth Against Violence – Kevin determined to make a difference
Youth Against Violence – Kevin determined to make a differenceIn a neighbourghood that has become known for violence especially among young males, one young man – Kevin Alleyne- is determined to make a difference.
23-year old Kevin of Wildey St. Michael in Barbados was one of the participants at the Caribbean Regional Consultation on the UN Secretary General’s Study on Violence last year and upon his return to the island became involved in the UNICEF Xchange programme. Xchange is a movement for a positive lifestyle and uses sports, drama, music and culture as entry points to reach young people with a positive lifestyle.
For Kevin his passion is football and working closely with former Barbados national player Derrick Hurley, Kevin has stared a football programme in the Pine Wildey area for youth 13 to 23 years old, who would normally be on the “block” possibly engaging in negative activities.
“For me personally, knowing the environment from which these youngsters come I just wanted them to know that there was someone out there who was looking out for them,” said Kevin, the oldest of three children.
“I want them to see that there is an alternative to block life and at the end of the day to become role models and even become an Xchanger like I have done,” he added.
Since it started in July approximately 32 young men between ages 8- 23 years with the majority being under 18 years, practice every Sunday on the grounds of the Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic – a institution that teaches trade skills.
Coach Hurley noted that very soon, in addition to learning football skills, he will also be introducing HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention and other lifeskills such as conflict resolution to the players to help with their overall personal development. On Sunday 08 October the project was visited by UNICEF Eastern Caribbean Officers Lisa McClean-Trotman and Elaine King, who noted that they were pleased with the discipline and commitment of the players.