The local Portsmouth community is set to receive a huge boost to their safety after the Police and Crime Commissioner has awarded £248,000 to support the Safer Streets campaign.

The funding is aimed at tackling neighbourhood crime, violence against women and girls, and anti-social behaviour across England and Wales and includes the following successful projects for Portsmouth:

  • A Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) support hub to support 12 schools who have made their commitment to the MVP Programme in Portsmouth, the Isle of Wight, Havant and Gosport. An online support and resource hub will enable further roll out of the programme and will include action learning sets, case studies, lesson guides and other resources The hub will also provide a resource for new schools who want to start their MVP journey.
  • Direct Outreach will be rolled out across Portsmouth, Gosport, Fareham, Havant and the Isle of Wight. Aimed at reducing anti-social behaviour, the scheme will engage young people in areas they meet which will mean there is a direct impact on levels of youth-related anti-social behaviour. Using data and intelligence from Community Safety Partnerships, police and other local intelligence, youth workers will be deployed to hotspot areas where issues of youth ASB are apparent. These youth workers will offer young people an alternative to traditional services, developing relationships with them, and the local community with the aim of making every contact count.
  • A Violence Against Women and Girls information hub to support night-time economy workers in Portsmouth, the Isle of Wight, Havant, Gosport, Fareham and Eastleigh
  • The roll out of ‘Engaging the Bystander’ training builds upon work delivered in previous rounds of Safer Streets funding. Over 500 people working in and around the Solent have received this training – which enables people to be active bystanders if witness to an incident of violence. A ‘train the trainer’ model will be delivered to 20 individuals from across the Solent, to further the reach and increase training capacity. Furthermore, we will be launching a bystander training e-learning module, designed to increase accessibility to the training to the wider public.

The Safer Streets work is a partnership of nine local authorities (Gosport, Fareham, Havant, Isle of Wight, Eastleigh, Basingstoke and Deane, Hart, Rushmoor and Portsmouth) and is led Portsmouth City Council.

Past funding has been used to deliver improvements to street lighting and CCTV coverage in targeted areas and has been focussed on influencing behaviours that can lead to violence against women and girls, and the prevention of them.

Cllr Ian Holder, Cabinet Member for Safety in the Community at Portsmouth City Council said:

“Women and girls often feel unsafe when walking around Portsmouth, especially at night. This funding is invaluable in reducing crime, enhancing community safety and making people feel safe in their city.

“We all have our part to play in reducing violence against women wherever we can. I urge schools and businesses to get involved to help us make Portsmouth a safer place to live, work and visit.”