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The Archbishop of York Opens New Centre to Tackle Gun Crime and Gang Culture

Archbishop of York Opening New Youth for Christ Operations Centre

Thursday 25th October 2007

Guns, gangs and the Christian gospel featured in the Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu opening of a £880,000 Youth for Christ operations centre at Coombswood Business Park, Halesowen, Birmingham

The new purpose-built centre has been funded through voluntary donations by people committed to seeing young people encounter God where they live, from prisons to streets, in drop-in centres and within youth groups. Youth for Christ, a national charity of which the Archbishop is President, works with 71,000 young people each week at 65 centres throughout the UK.

On opening the centre, Dr. John Sentamu said: "We must continue to engage with our local communities and work together to offer refuge to young people who seek an alternative to gangs that dominate their lives. Let every Church be a centre of inspiration, a place of support, a place of nurture and encouragement for those seeking a new way of life."

Dr. Sentamu also encouraged the Government, Churches and the wider community to examine and support initiatives where faith has played a major part in transforming people's lives and the communities in which they live.

Such initiatives include the successful Birmingham-based Bringing Hope project. Its recent report entitled 'The Damascus Road Principles' describes the transformational experiences of people classed as 'disaffected', 'hard to reach' and 'hopeless'.

Roy Crowne, National Director of Youth for Christ, said: "Youth for Christ's commitment has always been to young people, wherever they are - in young offenders' institutions, secure units, in schools and in communities. YFC offers young people, including the marginalised and excluded, a place to belong, rediscover their self worth, build friendships - in and out of church - and to help them make right choices and life decisions."


Notes for Editors

Youth for Christ (YFC) is a national Christian charity. Visit or contact Merisa MacInnes at email or at tel. 0121 502 9620/mb. 07817 304397

Bringing Hope and its recent report 'The Damascus Road Principles'. Visit or contact The Reverend Carver Anderson at tel. 0121 772 3444.

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