Playing a role in society has never been so important

Iqra Saied, 13, wears an Ariana Grande t-shirt as she looks at flowers outside Manchester Town Hall

LESLEY KEATING: We must stop giving these ‘cockroaches’ any credence

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Full marks to Justine Norman for the way she has tackled the problem of anti-social behaviour outside her home in Gosport.

Having her flowers destroyed and her rubbish bins tipped over was not just a nuisance. It was intimidating and even made her consider moving house.

There aren’t any excuses for the kind of behaviour she was subjected to but that didn’t stop her from trying to find out why she had become a target.

We understand that people find anti-social behaviour like this threatening, that they are sometimes concerned about standing up to those responsible for fear of making the situation worse.

But this lady has shown just what can be achieved by refusing to back down. She realised that moving away wouldn’t solve the problem for others – and has since become the solution to the problem herself.

She’s worked with the young people who congregated outside her home to start a club for them to attend. They had told her they were bored and didn’t have anywhere to go so she set the wheels in motion. A venue has been found, activities have been thought of and there is a chance for these youngsters to take over the running of the club in future.

Of course not everybody has the time to get involved with setting up a youth club but we are pleased Justine realised this was something she could do.

The fact of the matter is that many people already volunteer their time to help run organisations such as the Scouts, Guides, after school clubs and other initiatives and that is vital.

We are facing some tough times and the government has already warned that money is short. Activity schemes will undoubtedly be cut when it comes to working out how money should be spent.

As a society we all have a contribution to make, perhaps more so now than ever. Justine is doing her bit and we wish her all the very best with the youth club.

She’s taking control and she deserves to be recognised and rewarded for that. We sincerely hope the young people she’s hoping to help appreciate that.

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