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Addressing knife crime with young people

Box Smart was set up by Colchester Borough Homes as a means of addressing the growing problem of knife crime and County Lines activity within the Colchester area.

The vision for Box Smart was to instil confidence and discipline in young people through boxing, while providing access to positive role models and mentorship.

The programme provided free training from qualified boxing coaches to 16 disadvantaged young people, vulnerable to the dangers of knife crime and County Lines. In addition to the boxing training, the coaches also acted as positive role models and mentors for the youngsters.


Group 1
Who is it for?
Young adults in Colchester
Goal 1
Prime Objective:
to give young adults confidence and discipline
Goal 2
Second Objective:
to provide access to positive role models
I have made many friends through Box Smart, with people I did not know before. It has made me a happier person and I hope that there will be similar projects like this in the future as I would like to be a part of something like this again.
Chloe, a participant

The programme helped the young people to improve their relationships, develop new social connections and understand the positive role boxing and physical activity could play in their lives.

The group also received guidance and mentoring from Colchester-based Olympic boxer Lewis Richardson, who focused on the importance of family and the positive impact sport has made on his own life.

All participants received free membership at Alresford Boxing Club.

young people referred to programme
participants were at risk to county lines
sustained in boxing after the project
The entire Box Smart experience has had a massive impact on my son. His whole attitude has changed: he’s able to be in control of his anger and talks more about how he feels. His school has also commented that they have seen a difference in his attitude and his work ethic.
Participants parent