TUFF FC are team of teenagers from East London set up to help fight young people becoming radicalised. Recently they played a school in leafy Sevenoaks where the teachers say pupils don't get enough exposure to other cultures. Here they explain, in their own words, why their work is so important, and where their mission will take them next.
The Unity of Faiths Foundation (TUFF) has a unique programme that promotes British values through football and sport.
The programme has supported thousands of youths in London - children who have been deprived of sport due to poverty - who were on the brink of falling into gangs and more recently in danger of being radicalised.
TUFF’s work has single-handedly stopped 33 children who were in danger of going to Syria.
TUFF has been contacted by a plethora of governments across the world keen to establish the programme within their cities.
In Britain: Somerset, Liverpool, Bristol, Kent and Bradford Councils - to name just a few - want to start the TUFF programme for the same reasons but interestingly, from a different angle.
Our children won't have a problem in primary or secondary school, however, our children will have a problem when they get to university because, once there, they will meet youths from many other cultures and religions with different skin colour and different names such as Mohammad, Saima, Gurvir, Abdijabar, Curan, etc. So if we have your TUFF template in place, work in conjunction with our schools, clubs, and other grassroots organisations - by the time our children reach university, they will have the knowledge and know-how to deal with children from other cultures, ethnicities, colours, religions. They will not be ignorant or frightened about approaching other non-white youths.
This was a message from some of the councils around Britain - how the TUFF programme can support children from every background.
At this present moment, 19% of Britain's population come from different ethnicities yet 81% of the population is predominantly white.> We at TUFF believe this has now become a much wider message - about embracing British values with understanding, acceptance, compassion and positivity.>TUFF is supported by Pope Francis as Patron and one of the worlds greatest footballers Diego Maradona who is an Ambassador.>TUFF's next trip takes them to The White House to meet President Obama who wants the roll the TUFF program all over USA. TUFF is looking for for support to fund this trip and also help take this program into many cities and towns around Britain.