On BBC news reported children who are struggling with bullying and street fights in Preston which were recorded and put on social media. The BBC report highlighted the impact on children and parents in Chorley.
The BBC report highlighted how “Children as young as 11 have been subjected to brutal attacks by teenagers in a Lancashire town - with the assaults filmed and shared on social media.”
The families interviewed were distraught at what had happened to their children. They felt powerless to help their children who were traumatised by the violence and brutality of the attacks.
“The mother of one girl said she was told her daughter could have been one blow away from losing her life.” “The videos show children being dragged to the ground - squealing and crying out as they try to shield their heads from kicks and punches. Voices of others can be heard, off-camera, egging-on the attackers.”
In the report it is said that this is a new pattern of violent attacks by children on other children was not just the act of attacking victims but also humiliating them on social media. “Filming such violence and humiliation, and then sharing it online, has become known by the term "patterning" - with the aim of embarrassing victims even further by forwarding the videos across the web.”
The attacks were posted online and shared across multiple social media platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook. The attacks children shared these videos with their friends and tag the victim so that they have to relive the ordeal over and over again. It is not just the children who have to relive the trauma, but also the parents.
One mother described "I got a phone call - with her absolutely screaming 'Mum, please. They've got me. They've got my hair. My hair is falling out. Now they've stomped all over me.'
This violence has a huge impact not just on the child but also on the families and friends of the child.
The report went on to explain that the police said they could not do anything for some of the assaults because they were not deemed violent enough!
It took days for the police to act and in some cases weeks some cases it took the took weeks for the police to even respond to the families of the victims.
In an independent national report by the Policy Exchange a centre right think tank, says many common offences are almost entirely decriminalised and concluded the police are not able currently to deal with modern issues now effecting communities across the UK.
“Two of those involved in the attack received a voluntary caution”, which one of the mums said is “completely unacceptable considering the violence used.” She went on to say, "You expect the police to do everything to make sure that you get justice for your child - and when they don't, you feel like you've been let down and there's nothing you can do about it."
The report argues that the police need to reform, to prevent crime and disorder, and secure and maintain the respect and approval of the public. You can read the full report here.
This blog is not one aimed at the police and the comments about their lack of ability to respond. Rather it is to highlight the issue and what parents can do to help their children.
It is aimed at parents wanting to make a difference in their own lives and for their children in a positive way.
What the BBC and the report has highlighted is there is an issue and here we look at ways in which parents can help there kids stay out of trouble.
Street violence amongst children is rising. There are 2 sides to the problem children as perpetrators and the young victims of their violence.
Whilst the route causes of the problem are many, the underlying issue is one of respect and ambition. This is an issue for parents. Lack of respect leads to a breakdown in authority both at home and on the streets.
Lack of ambition and confidence to achieve something in life leads to a breakdown in authority, whatever the child's back ground or family income. These are issues which can lead to a sense of frustration and a feeling of worthlessness a feeding ground for street gangs.
How can parents can help their children who perpetrating street violence and bullying?
The most important thing is to act if your child is violent, or frequently getting into trouble, or you suspect is hanging around with the wrong type of people.
Martial arts clubs have saved many children and teenagers from falling into a cycle of violence and crime.
It's easy to get the impression that these clubs are about fighting and violence the reality is that they teach children how to control and channel aggression, build their confidence, and respect for elders.
Martial Art Clubs help build confidence in youngsters which helps them grow and go onto achieve great things with their lives.
Something that is sadly lacking in British youngsters today.
Single parents, mums in particular can find it hard to control their offspring. We frequently get calls from mums asking for advice and realise that joining their child joining a martial arts club can help their children escape from trouble.
Examples of how Martial Art clubs and Boxing clubs have not only helped children escape from violent behaviour are many.
Martial Arts Clubs have proven themselves to be an effective way for youngster to channel their aggression and succeed in life.
Take for example Leon Edwards now 30 years old raised by his single mother in Birmingham joined a local MMA club that took him from local gangs to become a UFC World champion. He delivered a knockout kick to Kamara in the final round to clinch the UFC world welterweight championship at UFC 278 in Salt lake City USA in 2022. More about Leon.
“I was arrested a few times, for fights and having a knife. My mum had to come to the police station many times to get me out. I knew what I was doing was breaking her heart, but I just kept doing it because your friends are doing it and as a teenager you're just involved.
At the time your brain is so diluted and so focused you think this is life, and this is your world. You can't see outside of it." One day, at the age of 17, when Edwards was walking to the bus stop with his mother, she spotted a gym above a DVD rental store offering training in mixed martial arts.
Edwards joined and trainers immediately spotted his talent. He hadn't even heard of MMA before.
"I was thinking I should enjoy my life and not have to look behind my back at people trying to stab me, see the world - and that's what I did. I put all my energy into training at 17 and just never looked back."
Martial Arts reaches out to all social groups take Patrick Pimblett known as “Paddy the Baddy” from Huyton, Liverpool.
Paddy now 26 years old recently won a world Champion UFC fight establishing himself as one of the most exciting fighters in the UK. His father an entrepreneur, his mum a housewife. Paddy started MMA training aged 15 in a local club. Within 2 years he claimed the Cage Warriors Championship. He's now estimated to be worth $1.5m according to Networth & salary report from prize money and sponsorship. More about Paddy
Paddy The Baddy currently lives in Liverpool and says he never plans to leave the city. Speaking to The Guardian, he said:
“I’ll be a billionaire eventually and there won’t be no kids eating out of food banks in this city then. I’ll make sure of it.”
This moral to this story is that there is a growing problem of street violence perpetrated by children in Britain. However, opportunity and help is just around the corner.
Amazing Martial arts Clubs with the best instructors are just around the corner. Not everyone will earn a billion dollars, but those who do join up will benefit from the Martial Arts training.
Find a Martial art Club Near You who knows your kids could be a world champion and a person who the local community look up to not down on.
Lets face it the police have a tough job to do and we can't wait for reform so take action today and book your kids into a class.