Lives Not Knives week

Dated: 5 April 2022

Last week was ‘Lives Not Knives’ week at Woodhouse, where our students were exposed to all manner of talks, tutorials and workshops on the theme of knife crime.
Guest speakers spoke movingly of their experiences with knife crime - both as victims and relatives of victims. Members of the Metropolitan Police visited for a Q & A session on knife crime and ‘stop and search’ procedures. Students shared their own experiences on a wall of notes, relating how knife crime had impacted on them and their families.
Students found the practical workshops of particular interest, especially those on first aid and self defence.
The emergency first aid course instructed students on life saving measures they can take if they are faced with a victim of a knife attack. Students learned how to look for the vital signs of life and injury and how to place someone in the recovery position.
They learned about stemming bleeding by applying pressure and how to bandage lacerations. They even practised CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) techniques on dummies. The workshop, provided by Helen and Daniel from Learn2Rescue, went over very well and everyone enjoyed learning potentially live saving skills.
The self defence and street awareness sessions were equally instructive. Students were first informed at length about how to recognise when you are walking into trouble, how to carry yourself in public to avoid intimidation, and how to become more ‘street wise’ to danger - and the importance of removing yourself from escalating confrontation. They then learned some practical martial arts techniques to try and defend themselves should they be cornered (running away is always the best option) and attacked with a blade.
The instructors were frank about the likelihood of injury in these circumstances, but students may have picked up enough to avoid a fatal blow. An at times quite disconcerting workshop, but ultimately necessary for teenagers living in the capital.
Student Leandra said “It was a helpful workshop, it's made me want to go and practice the defence moves more - to improve.”
Fellow student Emiola told us “I really loved it, they had some very helpful tips and we learnt how to deal with different situations. I think it was good to know what to do and I feel a bit more confident from it. I think we should have more real life situation classes like these in college.”

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