End of Summer & New Activities at Baraka
Baraka finished its long summer holiday programme during Notting Hill Carnival weekend and has plenty more lined up for Autumn as schools reopen.
Over the summer Baraka offered a wide range of free activities to help young people cope with the Coronavirus lockdown and to enjoy the summer months outdoors.
Alongside other local youth clubs, Baraka’s youth mentor, Mohammed ‘Mo’ Senhaji took a group of Baraka boys dirt biking in Epsom. Other activities during a packed August included trips to London Zoo, Oxygen Freejumping Trampoline Park, and Go Ape in Battersea Park.
Mo also led daily outdoor activities in local parks in West London including games of rounders, fitness sessions, and boxing training, followed by lunch. For the Baraka girls, there was volleyball and cycling.
There were also trips organised by Baraka to give the young people a change of scenery and relax away from North Kensington, including to Richmond park.
Although there was no official Notting Hill Carnival on the streets this year, Baraka was keen to organise plenty to keep the youths occupied during the period of heightened tensions locally. Baraka carried out its Carnival outreach between Wednesday and Bank Holiday Monday, taking groups of boys out of London for dinner, helping groups of youths who had been targetted by the police using stop and search. A lot of local youth clubs were closed over Carnival weekend and Mo and his colleagues were on the streets helping young men and also liaising with the police to help defuse potential flashpoints.
Again, Baraka utilised local green spaces to keep young people off the streets and to focus them on being healthy and having fun.
To finish off Carnival weekend and to mark the end of a busy Summer, Mo took a group for Thai and Malaysian food.
Throughout the whole Covid-19 period since March, Baraka has provided free sanitisers and PPE to youths and their families and offered alternative activities to help keep young people stimulated and safe.
Baraka has new opportunities on offer in the Autumn, including a three-month cycling project in order to train young people to be safe cyclists, in partnership with Bike Works CIC.
From mid-September, a series of #BCATalks workshops begins at Canalside House, in partnership with the police including Engagement Officer PC Carlos Husband. The sessions will facilitate young people to engage with important and sensitive social issues, including health, social media, gang grooming, and Black Lives Matter.
Baraka’s regular classes will also resume, including supplementary schooling, sports and the mentoring programme led by Mo which supports young people in transition including by helping them find apprenticeships and other avenues into work.
You can follow Mo on Instagram here
And read more about Baraka’s youth mentoring here.