Somali Community

May 30, 2008 at 4:04 pm / by

I was disappointed not to be able to attend the Pan-London Somali Youth Event last week but I heard from Awale Olad that it was a huge success. Awale is the Chairman of the Somali Youth Development Resource Centre (SYDRC) in Kentish Town, just off Bartholomew Road. He invited me to this event, which was sponsored by the Metropolitan Police and the Borough Commanders of both Camden and Harrow.

Awale told me that the whole forum of the Pan London Somali Youth event agreed to a basic principle, which was the need for a consensus. They discussed the need for the community to work closely together and engage the police and the local authority on all fundamental issues. They agreed that the importance of information sharing was paramount. Additionally the forum highlighted the necessity of having a greater and clearer understanding of people’s experiences, journeys and faith – identifying with the youth directly and addressing their problems in a secure environment.

Other issues discussed related to anti-social and violent behaviour, drugs and alcohol and whether Somali youths could integrate into society without losing their identity. It sounds like it was a very interesting event and I definitely want to attend future events as it’s important to encourage the Somali community to become more active in the borough.

On a more sombre note, I read Awale’s guest entry on Cllr Theo Blackwell’s blog about the recent Somali shootings in North London. You can read his poignant account here.