On The Pulse: Should Boris fund more mentoring schemes for London’s youths?


SW Londoner reporter Nadine Burnham-Marshalleck takes to the streets of Wandsworth to find out.


By Nadine Burnham-Marshalleck

Mayor Boris Johnson’s proposal for “boot camps” is aimed at preventing London’s youths from entering a life of crime.

The recent riots in London saw a boy as young as 11 prosecuted for theft.

Recent figures from the Ministry of Justice showed that 36% of juveniles had at least one fixed period of exclusion from school during 2009/10.

The Mayor’s mentoring and leadership academies will aim to offer guidance and discipline to young people who might otherwise become the rioters of tomorrow.

However, at a time of such economic hardship, should Boris Johnson go ahead with his proposal to fund more mentoring schemes in London?

SW Londoner took to the streets of Wandsworth to find out what people had to say.


Should Boris Johnson fund more mentoring schemes for London’s youths?








Francesco, 26

“It shows the young kids in the community that Boris is willing to give something back.  I think it’s a good way to keep youths off the street.  I think it’s a good idea.”


Tony, 25

“I think it’s very important.  It will help young kids do something positive with their lives in their spare time.”


Reece, 18

“It’s a great idea to develop these schemes.  Mentoring is a good thing.  When I was in school I was part of a mentoring scheme trying to get young black boys into biomedical sciences and to become doctors.  It was nice to meet up with older people and have mentors that I knew I could go and talk to and they would provide a different perspective.”


Shante, 18

“It’s potentially a good idea.  However, right now, with the whole recession situation and cutting so many different costs and different things, the idea of just focusing on mentoring is not ideal in the current climate.”


Jude, 45

“It’s a very good idea because with young people sometimes they don’t realise their potential and with a mentor they can help to reach that potential.  These sorts of projects need funding and support from people.”


Carol, 49

“To be honest, there are lots of other causes that could do with the funding.  I’m more concerned about people who are losing their jobs and can’t afford to pay their mortgages.”


Lenny, 61

“Forget mentoring, bringing back national service would be more effective.”


Norma, 60

“If it keeps young people off the streets and out of trouble then it can only be a good thing.”

Related Articles