West Ham United continued their support of the Enough is Enough campaign with Saturday's league game against Everton.
The club is working closely with the elected Mayor of Newham Sir Robin Wales, Newham Council and the Metropolitan Police to persuade young people that carrying a weapon is not acceptable. Enough is Enough is a council-led initiative designed to raise awareness among young people that weapons can cause pain and heartache and take innocent lives.
Club officials, management and coaching staff were wearing green ribbons to show their support for the campaign, while the players will be wore Enough is Enough shirts during the pre-match warm-up. Captain Lucas Neill, Dean Ashton, Anton Ferdinand and Hayden Mullins as well as former Hammers player Leroy Rosenior have all recorded campaign messages encouraging fans to text their support.
The Enough is Enough campaign follows the stabbing of 17-year-old Hammers fan Rizwan Darbar from Forest Gate, who died in October after muggers tried to steal his mobile phone. Adam Regis, 15, from Plaistow, and Paul Erhahon, 14, who went to school in Beckton, died in knife incidents in March and April respectively. In January, Newham Sixth Form College student Stephen Boachie, 17, was stabbed to death and Mohammed Ahmed, 17, from Manor Park, suffered a similar fate in August. Last month, Biendi Litambola, 17, was killed in Canning Town.
Rizwan Darbar's brother Tausif and the rest of his family and Kristina Caesar, the mother of Adam Regis, are backing the campaign. There is also support from Home Office Minister Tony McNulty, urban R'n'B artist Mumzy, Newham's Young Mayor Zuhayb Ahmed and Abdul Malik, 20, from Plaistow, who lost his sight after being shot in April. Sir Robin said: "This campaign will hopefully encourage young people to give up weapons and report those who carry them.
"We want our younger generation to realise that carrying a weapon will not solve their problems and that there are people and services who can help if they feel vulnerable. Youth crime has decreased in Newham over the past year, but recent attacks - some of which have resulted in the tragic deaths of our young people - are proof that knife and gun crime is still a problem, not only in Newham but throughout the UK.
"We have so many talented youngsters in Newham and it saddens me to think that some of them will throw their lives away - and the lives of others. Let's all take a stand and say Enough is Enough." If you want to pledge your support to the campaign text your name and the word ENOUGH to 07624 809655. (Normal text charges apply).
You can also visit the website www.newhamsaysenoughisenough.com to pledge support. If you have any information about gun or knife crime you can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.