Youth against crime in Newham Town Hall, East Ham

Young people from all over east London gathered at Newham Town Hall in East Ham on Saturday to put an end to violent crime.

Working together to make their communities safer, a charity intiative called Youth Against Crime NOT Crime Against You (YACnCAY) hosted a free event called Upfront at the Barking Road building.

The event aimed to celebrate the achievements of young people and display their creativity while touching others with motivational speakers and informing with the help of the Metropolitan Police.

Kat Boyce, former MTV Base and Choice FM presenter, hosted Upfront alongside Eastenders actress Bumni Mojekwu, who played teenager Mercy Olubumni in the BBC One soap.

Hundreds of guests turned out to watch a fashion show, stand up comedy, and traditional African dance from the Orimolade Dance Troupe.

Special appearances also came from former US inmate turned author Shaun Attwood and Richard Taylor OBE, father of murdered teen Damilola Taylor and founder of The Damilola Taylor Trust, both gave inspirational speeches based on personal accounts of youth crime.

Live music was also a feature of the day with live performances from Khalaeliah, ASB, and Aylwin Steele & the Zealots.

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The YACnCAY charity works closely with Kingsford Community School in Beckton and used the Upfront event to honour their student for making such a positive contribution to their community by standing up against knife crime.

The Metropolitan Police also ran workshops on internet safety, handling stop and search situations, and they gave a presentation on Trident, their violent and gang-related crime operation.

Dr Toyin Idowu was moved to set up YACnCAY 2010 after a fatal cime committed against a friends’ son.