PEOPLE DON’T REALLY GET AWARDS LIKE THAT WHERE I’M FROM.STEPHEN ADDISON
The founder of Box Up Crime has been awarded a British Empire Medal in the Queen’s 2019 New Year’s Honours list.
Stephen Addison was recognised for his services to young people in Barking and Dagenham.
Stephen criticised the capital’s ongoing problems with knife crime and youth violence, admitting his work came with a heavy emotional toll.
“People don’t really get awards like that where I’m from,” he said, referring to the “mistakes” in his past that saw him kicked out of school and drawn to gang culture. “I don’t want to see young people get killed or murdered,” he said, adding: “I’ve been to four, five funerals this year.”
“So, for me, this award is great, it really ends off the year. But, really and truly, I want this award to do something – not just give me credibility or make people feel Box Up’s been recognised by the Crown – but I really want this award to do something in the sense that it motivates and inspires a generation of young people that they can get this award too.”