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Project

Girls and young women's research project

A national research project speaking to young women about their experiences of stop and search.

About the project

StopWatch are excited to kick off a national research project speaking to young women about their experiences of stop and search.

The project was devised in response to girls and young women reporting stop and search encounters to be frightening and humiliating experiences. They expressed frustration that despite being directly impacted by stop and search powers, they were excluded from community and policy discussions, and left feeling voiceless and ignored. The research we are conducting will give a voice to and empower these and other young women.

The teams who will be carrying out the research are young women between the ages of 16 and 30 years. They are being trained in research skills by Dr Louise Owusu-Kwarteng, associate dean and director of undergraduate research at Greenwich University. We believe that with continued training and assistance the research teams can be supported to influence policy using an array of new skills in research, policy and advocacy.

Everyone involved in this project is female, and our motto is ‘Research About Us, By Us, For Us’. We believe that women are best placed to research and tell their own stories, and young women being interviewed by their peers will produce a comfortable and authentic interview process.

Interviewing survivors

We interviewed Dr Koshka Duff, who received an apology from the Met police in January 2022 after a strip search [read more about the case here].

Watch the video to learn about her harrowing experience as well as her views on how stop and search affects young women and girls.

Stop and search girls questionnaire

To make this research really count we need 5,000 responses! It will only take a couple of minutes to complete our quick anonymous survey, have your voice heard and contribute to this ground-breaking research.

If you have had a stop and search experience that you would like to discuss in a more detailed interview, please contact national research lead Shenna (contact details also in bio).

Questionnaire form

In keeping with our organisational values of collaboration, inclusivity and diversity, the project will be a collaboration between StopWatch, and groups from the following regions:

  • London (flagship research team)
  • Leicester
  • Liverpool
  • Manchester [coming soon!]
  • Nottingham [coming soon!]

Click on the links below to find out more about participants from the following regions. To get involved in the project or to find out more information, please contact national research lead Shenna (contact details also in bio).

Blog series on the girls and young women's research project

Girls and young women's research project: Week 1

National research lead

Shenna Darcheville
Shenna
Youth voice and participation lead
I am Shenna Darcheville and I am the youth voice and participation lead for StopWatch. Born and raised in Hackney, I am a criminologist with several years’ experience working with young people. I have worked for the Youth Offending Team, in education and within the charity sector. I have developed and facilitated workshops for young people affected by issues such as knife crime, gangs, county lines, substance abuse and stop and search. I am extremely excited to be leading the StopWatch Girls and young women's research project. Young women and girls are often left out of the conversation around stop and search, so I am pleased to be able to provide a platform to have their voices and stories heard. I wanted this research project to be led entirely by girls and women, as I think we are best placed to research and tell our own stories, research about us, done by us and presented by us. The young women who will be conducting the research are an amazing group of educated, assertive and passionate future change makers and leaders and I am honoured to be working with them!

Flagship research team [London]

Grace
Grace
Lead researcher
I am proud to be a part of this research project because I believe it is important to empower young Black women through giving them the skills and training to enrich research that shows experiences of being subjected to stop and search. The experiences attributed to women who are subjected to stop and search are rarely given a voice which inevitably makes them feel invisible and the research collected through this project will help to create change, which inevitably creates new processes where we can be respected and supported properly.
Ellie-Mae
Ellie-Mae
Researcher
My name is Ellie-Mae. I'm so excited to be part of Stopwatch's Girls and young women's research project as I have a great passion for looking at how the world works and understanding why. Being able to undertake and help in co-creating this research will be an amazing opportunity for me to take a deeper look and hopefully make a difference to the unique experiences of young women that are stopped and searched. I think this project is vital, as we so rarely hear the statistics around or effects of stop and search on women, and by completing this research we can change the trends and help to improve women's overall feelings of safety and mental wellbeing.
Faith
Faith
Researcher
My name Is Faith and I’m proud to be apart of this project because I’m very passionate about the safety of Black women and women in general and I would like to be a part of the solution to make this happen. I believe that the research that we do will show the [criminal justice] system the reality for Black women and help them to change it and make it safer for us.
India
India
Researcher
My name is India and I am currently studying Health and Social Care at Westminster Kingsley college. I am very excited about being part of the StopWatch Girls and young women's research project, because I am passionate about women’s rights and social justice. Women are not often included in conversations about stop and search but it is something that affects us. I am also excited about the outcome and what I can learn about this. I am looking forward to the end results and seeing what we find out.
Jemima
Jemima
Researcher
My name is Jemima, I’m 18 years old and I am currently studying health and social care in college. I heard about the StopWatch girls research project through my work and decided I had to get involved! I'm all about contributing to making change and raising awareness for those in society who seem to at times be overlooked, or without a voice. I’m proud to be apart of this research where we will investigate and raise awareness for women who have had a horrible account of stop and search. I’ve been overwhelmed with joy to know that as a female I am a part of a process in making change and being an advocate for other women who need to be heard!
Sydney
Sydney
Researcher
I am currently a part-time master’s student in Creative Writing at Brunel University. I have recently joined Stopwatch Girls and young women's research project to help broaden my experience in the charity sector. I am keen to develop my identity during this training to truly help others and I want to maintain an involvement in helping the Black community. As a woman of colour, I feel this is an important cause to support and publicise.
Tori
Tori
Researcher
Hi, my name is Tori and I am 18 years old. I am currently studying Business in college. I am very excited about being a part of the StopWatch Girls and young women's research project because everyday we talk about stop and search, we assume boys are the prime targets but we forget to understand that girls get stopped and searched too. We need to be equally concerned for both boys and girls and to ensure they know their rights when being stopped and searched. I am really interested to see what we find out.
Maisie
Maisie
Researcher
My name is Maisie, and I am a young woman from Hackney. I have just completed a bachelor of science in social and public policy at the London School of Economics. I’m proud to be a part of StopWatch’s Girls and Young Women’s research project, as it’s vital to uncover how young women experience stop and search. Too often there are gaps in understanding how women encounter the society around them, which needlessly leads many individual women to feel entirely alone and powerless. Therefore, this project particularly excites me as it aims to share its findings in accessible and inventive ways, which will educate and empower young women of today.

Research team [Leicester]

Halima
Halima
Researcher
My name is Halima and I am currently studying at Beauchamp College in Oadby, Leicestershire undertaking A-levels in Sociology, Psychology and English Literature. I have participated/volunteered over the last 3 years in a number of community projects including Opal Arts, Black History Consortium and cherub braids. I am interested in making a change for young people.
Iye
Iye
Researcher
My name is Iye, and I am so happy to be joining this program because I am so passionate about equality and for everyone to feel loved and appreciated. I have had some experience with raising awareness about equality by working with my teacher and a group of fellow students talking about equality in school on BBC Radio Leicester and also talking about Black experience on ITV News. As a group we have also raised awareness about the story of Stephen Lawrence to our school, dedicating a full week to help students understand why equality is so important.
Shalom
Shalom
Researcher
My name is Shalom. I am excited to begin this project as it will allow me to do what I am passionate about, which is speaking up for what is right. I have previously been interviewed for both BBC News and BBC Radio Leicester as well as ITV News, all platforms where I have been able to help speak out about bringing equality and doing what is right for our society. I have also become an ambassador for the Stephen Lawrence committee, which was another platform that allowed myself and other students to raise awareness of Stephen's story and the lessons behind it.
Vanessa
Vanessa
Researcher
My name is Vanessa. As a senior student in secondary school, I actively participated in raising awareness for Stephen Lawrence Week and Black History Month through various radio interviews, TV presentations and school assemblies. By the end of this 18-month research programme, I hope to acquire skills and experience in research and policy and advocacy through learning the base of young women’s experiences of stop and search and policing.

Research team [Liverpool]

Ammarah
Ammarah
Researcher
Hi my name is Ammarah and I am 23 years old. I’m proud to take part in this project as I want to use my skills and new learned skills whilst taking part to take an active role in supporting and in turn helping women and girls to feel and be safe and supported in their experience. I want to be able to contribute to vital research that contributes to this.
Riham
Riham
Researcher
My name is Riham and I am 17 years old and studying health and social care and psychology in sixth form. I am grateful and honoured to be a part of the StopWatch Girls and Young Women's Research Project since it will allow me to grow and improve my understanding of what women go through on a frequent basis. Furthermore, being a part of this will allow me to express why women's safety is significant.
Luciana
Luciana
Researcher
My name is Luciana, I am 18 years old and about to begin a degree in English literature. I’m looking forward to being a part of the StopWatch Girls project as whilst studying sociology in college the demand for recent, representative, non-malestream data was made very apparent to me, and I’m excited to contribute to getting such data out there. Furthermore, I have noticed a conflict between my own working-class background and the more middle-class backgrounds of some of my university peers who do not have the same experience of policing and the law as those from my region do, so I think that the opportunity to provide an academic insight into these experiences is extremely valuable.
Summara
Researcher
I am Summara Kanwal. Born and brought up in Pakistan, I am working with a women based charity organisation called WAST (women asylum seekers together) and looking forward to start working with other organization called safety4sisters. As I am working with vulnerable women, it is a great opportunity for me to be part of this project. I am passionate about the safety of women specially BAME community. I am looking forward to starting the project and excited about outcome and what I can learn about this.
Ann
Researcher
Hi my name is Ann, I have a background of medicine and dentistry. I have been involved in some research projects throughout my career. I'm very passionate in working in research. I have been working as a lay therapist on one of the research projects from the World Health Organization to bring a low-level intervention to the community suffering with minor level mental health struggles. I believe passionately that great change can be achieved by the power of individual voices being collected and heard through which the Interpretation of their lived experiences. This can cause the world to change how they meet their needs. I'm always keen to work for the rights of women and the community. I'm very excited to be a part of this project and learn and upgrade my experience with more research related skills and it will be a pleasure to give something back to society.
Suha
Researcher
Hi, my name is Suha. I’m proud to be a part of this project because I’ve always been aware and passionate about the struggles when it comes to a female in a male dominated industry. I’d love to make a change especially through research!
Nora
Researcher
My name is Nora. I am 17 years old and currently just finished year 12 going into year 13. I have participated in an organisation named ReachOut where I volunteered every week for two hours mentoring young children with extra curriculum alongside many online zoom NHS nursing work experiences. Hopefully by the end of this research programme I wish to achieve many skills such as confidence and experience within stop and search. I believe this programme is vital for young people to learn women's rights in general and especially regarding stop and search policies which aren’t great at the moment. I believe this research programme will truly make a difference.

Advisory board

Becky Clarke
Dr Becky Clarke
Advisory board member
Becky Clarke is a senior lecturer in the sociology department at Manchester Metropolitan University. Her interests centre around on the gendered and racialised experiences of criminalisation and punishment; processes of ‘othering’ in research, policy and media; the relationship between research and intervention or activism to challenge injustice. Her current work focusses on criminalisation of women and girls, through critical examination of welfare intervention and punishment in their lives. She is co-author of ‘Dangerous Associations: Joint enterprise, gangs and racism’ and ‘Stories of Injustice’.
Chrystal Genesis
Chrystal Genesis
Advisory board member
Chrystal is a presenter, editor and arts & culture consultant from London, now living in New York City. She runs and hosts award-winning independent arts, culture and politics podcast 'Stance', and has presented on BBC Podcast Radio Hour and BBC Front Row. She works as a producer for Sony Entertainment's Neon Hum Media. She worked running the youth department creating courses, workshops and performance programmes for young people aged 15-30 at Southbank Centre, Europe's largest centre for the arts, and executive produced its youth podcast Violet Nights. Previously Chrystal worked for the organisation’s Performance, Dance, Podcast & Comedy, and Contemporary Music teams. Prior to this, Chrystal worked at the BBC producing multi-platform arts, news and current affairs content for the Today Programme, Woman's Hour, The World at One and PM, all on Radio 4, as well as on shows for BBC London, 6 Music, BBC One, The World Affairs Unit, The Political Unit and BBC World in London and Washington DC. Chrystal works as an arts, culture and media consultant for organisations including Lambeth Council and European Cultural Foundation.
Monica Hingorani
Monica Hingorani
Advisory board member
Background and interest in collaborative intersectional feminist research: - Currently exploring early creativity, agency and resilience with young children and their families (PhD student) De Montfort University - As an undergraduate explored Black young men’s early experiences of policing Community development experience includes: - Chair of governing body - Highfields Centre, a £5m community anchor organisation - Helped establish Leicester Civil Rights Movement working with racially minoritised communities including asylum seekers and refugees - Volunteered with the local Racial Attacks Monitoring Project offering direct support to survivors of racist attacks and influencing strategic change in housing, education and advice services - Volunteer counsellor women’s sexual violence helpline - Student’s Union Women’s Officer National roles include: - The National Youth Agency facilitated learning networks of racially minoritised youth and community development workers - Editor of an award-winning journal highlighting Black young people’s national/local community action
Louise Owusu-Kwarteng
Dr Louise Owusu-Kwarteng
Advisory board member
Dr Louise Owusu-Kwarteng is an associate professor in sociology. She is also an associate dean and director of undergraduate research in FLAS. Louise holds a PhD in the sociology of education (University of Greenwich), a PGCE (University of Greenwich), an MA in social policy (Oxford Brookes University) and a BA (Hons) in sociology (University of East London). Her research interests focus on race and educational experience, but with specific emphasis on West African groups; sociological autobiography and ethnicity and identity. Louise also uses her academic knowledge and experience to raise awareness about rare illnesses, specifically Thrombotic Cytopenia Pupura, which is a rare blood disorder. More specifically, she has been involved in advising on inequalities around access to TTP treatment centres, and contributed to a UK Government white paper on rare illness in 2020. Moreover, she has participated in a range of workshops and seminars for AOFAC, a national charity, which specialises in research on this area. Furthermore she has worked closely with SANOFI, and in 2021, was the face of a global TTP campaign. Louise is an external examiner for sociology at Goldsmiths College and Teesside University. Prior to working at the University of Greenwich, Louise taught English as a second language and managed ESL teachers in Madrid. Before that she was seconded to the Community Cohesion Unit where she contributed to political leadership policy. Louise also worked at Oxford City Council as a community development officer.
Rebecca Parry
Rebecca Perry
Advisory board member
Rebecca leads the criminal justice team at the National Literacy Trust, designing and delivering a range of creative projects which aim to support people in custody, and in contact with the criminal justice system in the community, to tell their stories, build bonds with family members and learn new skills. She believes passionately in the power of centring voices of lived experience and consulting young people in custody on project design. She is a fellow of the Royal Society for Arts in recognition of her work to bring books and literacy interventions to people in prisons and Youth Offender Institutions (YOIs) who need them most.