Ashington launches its very own Mini Police Force based at the James Knott Campus.
Ten pupils, from the Campus, have volunteered to become mini police officers and will be working with Ashington’s Neighbourhood Policing Team during the current academic year. One of the first tasks for the Mini Force will be supporting local officers at Ashington’s annual Remembrance Day Service & Parade, which will take place this year on Sunday 11 November.
The aim of the Northumbria Police Scheme is to improve citizenship within communities and give children an opportunity to learn about their safety, their role within their community and how the police work to keep us all safe. The James Knott Campus has worked with Ashington’s Neighbourhood Policing Team in developing the Scheme. Inspector Kevin Waring, from Northumbria Police, said ‘It has been a pleasure to work with the Campus in developing the project. The scheme is aimed at children in year five (aged 9-10) and will focus on the contribution they can make in their community to make it a better place. The scheme will improve relationships with the police and will give the young people a voice as well as influencing people around them in a positive way’
Amanda Hall, from the James Knott Campus, adds ‘The scheme runs alongside the academic year and the children had to apply for the posts and agree to volunteer on weekends. The project is not based on academic ability but rather on children who will enthusiastically join in with the activities’.
The project has also been supported by Ashington Town Council and the Civic Head of Ashington, Cllr. Marjorie Chambers, went along to the launch and said ‘It’s great to see the children engaging in such a positive way with our local Police. The Town Council is delighted to support the project, through the purchase of the uniforms, and we do hope this will lead to greater respect for the Police as they work to make Ashington a safe place to live, work and visit’. The Northumbria Police Scheme aims to spread important messages about citizenship and how the police work within the community. Mini Police groups, within the Northumbria Police Force area, have assisted at the Sunderland International Airshow and the Great North Run as well as visiting some of the different departments within the force including the mounted section and police helicopter.