top of page

GAV Resources

GAV's approach to its work is evidence-based. Below you will find a number of resources that aid and underpin our work in the community.

Gangs and gang violence


How Gangs Work: An Ethnography of Youth Violence

St Antony's Series James A. Densley. 2016 Drawing on extensive interviews with gang members, this book provides a vivid portrayal of gang life. Topics include the profiles and motivations of gang members; the processes of gang evolution, organization, and recruitment; gang members' uses of violence, media, and technology and the role of gangs in the drugs trade and organized crime. James’s website is at:


The Street Casino:
Survival in Violent Street Gangs

Simon Harding. 2014 Gang violence is on the increase in certain neighbourhoods. There is an urgent need for a fresh perspective that offers insight into gang structure, organisation and offending behaviour to explain this increase. Using the findings from an extensive ethnographic study of local residents, professionals and gang members in south London, and drawing on his vast experience and knowledge of the field, Simon Harding proposes a unique theoretical perspective on survival in violent street gangs.


County Lines

Exploitation and Drug Dealing among Urban Street Gangs

Bristol University Press Simon Harding 2020 Described by the National Crime Agency as a ‘significant threat’, county lines involve gangs recruiting vulnerable youth to sell drugs in provincial areas. This phenomenon has impacted local drug markets, increasing criminal activity and violence. Exploring how county lines evolve, Harding reveals extensive criminal exploitation and control in the daily ‘grind’ to sell drugs. Drawing upon extensive interviews and case studies, this timely book gives voice to users and dealers, providing an in-depth analysis of techniques, relationships and ‘trapping’. With county lines now a critical issue for policing and government, this is an invaluable contribution to literature on gangs, youth violence and drugs.

Youth Studies.JPG

'Going Viral' and 'Going country': the expressive and instrumental activities of street gangs on social media

Journal of Youth Studies. Michelle L. Storrod & James A. Densley. 2017 The current study explores expressive and instrumental uses of the internet among street gangs. ‘Trap rap’ videos posted on YouTube and orientated around life as a drug dealer are identified as the ultimate cultural artifact for denoting London, UK, gang culture.

psychology of violence.JPG

Psychology of Violence

Growing Against Gangs and Violence: Findings From a Process and Outcome Evaluation James A. Densley, Joanna R. Adler, Lijun Zhu, and Mackenzie Lambine Online First Publication, April 14, 2016 The present study assesses program efficacy of Growing Against Gangs and Violence (GAGV), a primary prevention partnership with the U.K. Metropolitan Police Service (MPS), delivered in London schools with the aim of reducing gang involvement, delinquency, and violent offending and improving young people’s confidence in police.

Violence in the age of social media

Finding help if you are worried

GAV works with other organisations to ensure ongoing safe-guarding and support.  If you find yourself in a position where you are worried or scared about your own safety or a member of your family, these organisations can help. Clicking on the logo will take you through to their website.


NSPCC (the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) is a charity campaigning and working in child protection in the UK. For adults concerned about a child - call 0808 800 5000. Help for children and young people - call Childline on 0800 1111

Young Minds.png

YoungMinds is the UK’s leading charity fighting for children and young people’s mental health. We make sure all young people get the best possible mental health support and have the resilience to overcome life’s difficulties. They offer a free text messaging service if a young person is in crisis. For urgent help text YM to 85258


Crimestoppers is a community programme that allows people to provide anonymous information about criminal activity. If you have worries and want to speak up, call 0800 555 111


Fearless is a site where you can access non-judgemental information and advice about crime and criminality. What makes Fearless different is that they also provide you with a safe place to give information to us about crime - 100% anonymously.

rapecrisis logo.jpg

Rape Crisis exists to improve services and promote the needs and rights of women and girls who have experienced sexual abuse, rape and all forms of sexual violence. They work towards the elimination of sexual violence and abuse, raising awareness in the wider community and with government.

childrens society.jpg

The Children's Society fights for change, supporting disadvantaged children to have better lives. They are building a country where children are free from disadvantage.They support children in their personal development and to build positive relationships enabling children to reach their full potential and realise their ambitions.


With the dedication and expertise of around 8,000 staff, 20,000 volunteers and partners, Barnardo's continues to develop radical solutions to identify vulnerable children, intervene early and support them to work towards a positive future.


Childline is a free counselling service for children and young people up to their 19th birthday in the United Kingdom provided by the NSPCC.

breck foundation.jpg

The Breck Foundation campaigns for a safer internet for all children and young people – whether they are gaming, communicating on social media, using apps or taking part in any other internet-based activity.


The National Crime Agency is a national law enforcement agency in the United Kingdom. It is the UK's lead agency against organised crime; human, weapon and drug trafficking; cyber crime and economic crime that goes across regional and international borders.


CEOP is a law enforcement agency and exists to help keep children and young people safe from sexual abuse and grooming online. They help thousands of children and young people every year who have been in a similar situations.


The Met Police service look after the Greater London area, (excluding City of London) and its 8.6 million residents.


Surrey Police look after the residents of the county of Surrey. First-hand knowledge, industry best practices and practical crime prevention advice from officers and specialist teams all across the police.


bottom of page