This week The Enquirer had the opportunity of meeting with Mark Clarkson the Operation’s Manager for a Christian charity called ‘Word 4 Weapons’.
The East London base charity do a fantastic job in the local community by providing education packages, such as workshops and knife bins across the London area and other parts of the UK, for people to ‘bin their knives’. The charity has been in action for over ten years now and provides vital roles in our community.
“We are an anti-knife crime charity who provide secure bins in various places across London and other parts of the UK for people to come and surrender their knives.
“We are a primarily Christian based charity but we don’t enforce our religion on anyone. Our bins are there for everyone to use and we also provide an ‘All I need bag’ that contains literature to help turn a persons’ life around.
“Things like drug and alcohol problems, how to fill in a CV, information on housing and anything a person may require to help them set their life on a better path.”
“The charity set up, ‘The word for a weapon’ which people receive a bible in exchange for handing in your knife, but the charity are there for all members of the community and you don’t have to receive a bible or other item, if you do not want one.
“We don’t realistically expect every person to want a bible but the offer is there for anyone who wants one. Our aim and main priority is to get knives off the street.”
“If we can save a life, then we know we have made an impact, if we collect 20 knives in our bins, then we know that potentially we could have saved twenty lives.
“What drives us is helping people change their lives, making a difference and showing them a better path.”
Following the increase in violent crime and with gang culture forming part of our communities now, Mark spoke about why there has been such a dramatic increase in knife usage on our streets.
“On a seven year basis knife crime is on the increase. We have lost the ability to respect each other. Life has become cheap. To progress in a gang, you are often required to do certain acts to please senior gang members and we strongly suspect the use of knives is involved.”
Mark once worked as a police officer, working in the Anti Knife Crime Unit. “Don’t carry a knife because it can be taken off you and used against you. If you don’t carry a knife then that possibility will not be there.”
If you would like to be a volunteer, or would like further information or even to donate to this fantastic charity please visit Home – Word 4 Weapons.