GB Senior Women’s International, Melita Emanuel-Carr plans to host a ‘Stop the Violence’ charity basketball showcase in London this month in an attempt to bring people together and raise awareness about the current violence epidemic in London.
The event will be held at the Moberly Sports Centre on July 27 and will aim to raise money that will be donated to a local organisation called "Redthread", a charity who supports young people break their cycle of violence.
“Basketball is the second most competed sport in England and I strongly believe that this sport can give people, especially the younger generation, an outlet from the gang violence which has doubled within the past five years,” says Emanuel-Carr. “Speaking from experience, basketball is not just a game! It produces life skills and discipline. It also can create a family aspect which is what most children look for when joining a gang.“
Melita was a product of the England talent pathway and began her career in London where she played for Barking Abbey before heading to America like most of England’s young talents. Since then, she has had a successful professional career in Europe and last represented her country at the 2018 Commonwealth Games where she won a silver medal on the Gold Coast.
The Londoner gained her inspiration for the showcase whilst attending the University of Illinois – Chicago in the United States, where she was a four-year starter and graduated with a degree in Criminology. During her time in Chicago, a city with one of the highest murder rates from gang violence in the U.S, Melita and her teammate took a stand against the violence following the gang-related murder of a friend who was walking home after playing basketball. From the tragedy, they created an event called “Stop the Violence Basketball Game” to raise awareness of the dire effects violence has in the city.
“I have experienced at first hand the spiralling effect of violence in the inner-city communities. Seeing families and friendships destroyed due to gang violence made me feel like something needs to be done because it is horrible to see families and friends mourn over their loved ones,” said the Westminster Sports Ambassador.
The "Stop The Violence Charity Showcase" promises to be a fun day out for the local community and includes a 'Celebrity & Elite All Star Game’ featuring elite British athletes, basketball legends, rappers and politicians. There will also be live music and dance performances throughout the day.
The money raised from the event will go towards Redthread programmes, one of which is the Youth Violence Intervention Programme which funds youth workers to meet young victims of violence and aims to disrupt the cycles of escalating violence within communities. The event will take place at the Moberly sports centre, NW10 3NB at 2 pm.