Young people generally just want to try and fit in with those around them. In some cases, this can lead to risky situations, including those involving knife crime.
Encouraging them to find fun, engaging alternatives is a good way of keeping them safe and developing interests that enrich their lives.
Sports and creative pursuits
Local sports clubs can be an outlet for teenage energy and a great way for young people to find new social circles and a new sense of achievement and self discipline.
Many clubs offer free entry, free taster sessions, or have discounts for those on low incomes, as well as equipment for beginners to borrow so they can get started.
As well as local youth centres and youth drop-ins, many theatre, arts, music, filmmaking and dance organisations also provide opportunities for young people.
No Knives Better Lives Peer Educators
The No Knives Better Lives campaign trains and supports young people from across Scotland to help raise awareness of the risks and consequences of carrying a knife. They do this by speaking to and working with other young people in their community.
To find out more, visit our peer educators page.
Peer education and peer support projects
Youth charities and local authority youth projects in many areas of Scotland also support young people to learn about issues that affect them and to support others of a similar age facing similar problems.
Getting involved in this way can help young people feel more in control of their lives and their futures.
Check the telephone directory business section (or yellow pages) under 'Youth'.
Most charities provide volunteering opportunities and the range on offer is vast. From environmental projects to boatbuilding, volunteering is a great way to try new things and pick up new skills.
Find local volunteering opportunities via the Volunteer Scotland search page.