HAMPSHIRE is set to benefit from £500,000 cash injection from the Police and Crime Commissioner to tackle serious violence in the county.

The commissioner's Violence Reduction Unit has granted Hampshire and the Isle of Wight the funding to support initiatives focused on early intervention with young people at risk of serious violence, including positive role models, youth activities, one-to-one and whole-family support, and skills training for professionals.

The half a million pound investment has been distributed to different areas, with Hampshire receiving £232,770 and Southampton set to benefit from £134,110.

Police and Crime Commissioner Michael Lane said: "Over the past few months we have been establishing a Violence Reduction Unit that brings together our key partners to take a strategic view of serious violence across Hampshire, but also allows each area to respond to their local need.

"This funding will go to projects proven to engage young people most at risk and support them towards a future free from violence and is a positive step forward in tackling the root causes of violent crime.

"Over the coming months we will be reaching out to young people, communities, community safety partners and many others across the area to get their input into a longer-term strategy for Hampshire. I hope to hear from as many people as possible so that together, we can keep our communities safer."

The Violence Reduction Unit was set up in September, with funding from central government, and brings partners from police, probation, education, health and local authorities together with young people and communities to develop a "joined-up approach" to preventing and tackling serious violence.

Chris Brown, Southampton Violence Reduction Unit Manager at Southampton City Council, said: "There are many challenges to be overcome as we work through this project, but there is a great willingness from all the agencies and organisations I’ve engaged with so far to contribute to it – there is a real desire in Southampton to stop young people being hurt or involved in crime.

"I know that there are so many more parts of the community that can help and become involved, and our Summit early next year will help gather momentum and support to address some of the key causation's of serious violence.

"We will learn from the interventions we have funded in the next few months, and which will give us chance to build on their successes into 2020 and beyond."