Jermain Defoe officially launched the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation's latest Kickz project at Kelmscott Leisure Centre in Walthamstow on Wednesday.
The striker took part in football and boxing activities with local young people at what is one of the eight Kickz projects currently run by the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation across north-east London.
Kickz is a national initiative originally conceived by the Football Foundation, the Premier League, and the Metropolitan Police which uses the hook of professional football clubs' brands to target disadvantaged areas to ‘Create safer, stronger, more respectful communities through the development of young people's potential'.
JD said: "The issue of crime and anti-social behaviour among inner-city youths is high on the agenda and it's great to see football clubs like Spurs doing something to try and eradicate the problem.
"I grew up in an area very similar to this and the opportunity to do something constructive like sport during the evening is something I always would have appreciated as a youngster.
"And if me visiting can help perhaps inspire these young people to embrace what the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation and Kickz has on offer, then I am happy to show my support."
The Walthamstow project is run in partnership with the Leyton Orient Community Sports Programme, Waltham Forest Youth Service, GLL, Waltham Forest Community Based Housing Association, Waltham Forest Neighbourhood Management, Waltham Forest Children & Young People's Service.
Tottenham Hotspur Kickz has proven to be success in other areas of north-east London since its conception in 2006, primarily due to the engagement of local young men and the access to regular football based activities and competitions.
As the Walthamstow project moves into its second phase, there will be more focus on workshop and accredited based sessions whilst still providing life changing opportunities and experiences through the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, including:
• Music workshops promoting singing playing and producing
• Health workshops and consultations to improve awareness of fitness and nutrition
• Multi sport provision to also include a competitive element to enable progression opportunities to those interested in other sports i.e. table tennis
• IT workshops based on games design, development and testing.
Since October 2008, the Walthamstow Kickz project has received up to £25,000 of funding via the Waltham Forest Youth Offer, and they have committed a further £25,000 to the project as of this month.