The growing problem of weapon use among the UK's young is caused mainly by fear and fashion, research by the Bridge House Trust shows.
Social researchers Lemos & Crane carried out a study to identify the extent of the problem after being commissioned by the grant-giving arm of the Corporation of London last year.
Their report, called Fear and Fashion, identifies that knife use is greatest among young adults aged between 15 and 24.
It says that young people are carrying knives in school, youth clubs and on the street, with fear being the most common reason.
The report recommends that organisations develop and disseminate good-practice awareness programmes and materials for schools, youth clubs and the police, because the such material is not readily available.
The trust will fund two exemplar projects next Spring. It wants to hear from voluntary sector organisations whose projects will either help to prevent the use of weapons among 11-12 year-olds through awareness training or provide an intensive work programme for 15-16 year-olds who have been excluded from school.