32 Borough Cup 2022: Ending youth gang violence through sport

The 32 Borough Cup
The 32 Borough Cup / Image courtesy of ROOTS

The third annual 32 Borough Cup saw main organiser Grassroots for Good teamed up with Netflix's 'Top Boy' to further amplify the charity’s message of using football as a catalyst for uniting London’s youth against violence, and offering those involved additional opportunities to find career paths in future.

The non-profit founded the 32 Borough Cup in 2019 to combat youth violence, gang activity, and help young Londoners use their passion and drive purposefully. It gives youth a chance to thrive and feel empowered through sport while tackling some of the issues faced on and off the pitch.

So far in 2022, nine teenage murders have taken place in London. Initiatives such as the 32 Borough Cup aim to provide a focus and safe space in the capital to not only inspire the younger generations but to educate and unite them at the same time.

The cup itself brings together some of the city’s talented young footballers as part of a 2-day initiative set up by Bobby Kasanga, founder of Grassroots for Good. Dubbed London’s very own ‘World Cup’, the 32 Boroughs of London replace the 32 World Cup nations and bring all walks of life together while using sport for good in the community.

The first day of this year’s event was a careers fair, hosted at Loughborough University’s London campus, which saw companies spanning a range of industries offer insight, advice, and work experience opportunities to the hundreds that attended.

The second day of the initiative gave the talented youngsters a platform to show off their skills in a one-day tournament watched by local coaches and football scouts.

The overarching message was that there are opportunities available and made attainable to everyone in sports whether on the pitch or behind the scenes, was reinforced throughout.

Speaking at The 32 Borough Cup, Grassroots for Good founder Bobby Kasanga said:

"There are many young people that don’t really speak up, we don’t know what they’re going through. Coming here [The 32 Borough Cup] they meet up with other like minded people, it’s about trying to explore what we can do for them and really push them further in society.

"Our goal is to get kids off the streets to kick a ball instead and realise their potential."

See how you can get involved with Grassroots for Good here