Lancaster’s mini recruits now fully trained!

Thursday, July 20, 2023

Lancaster’s Mini Police initiative has come to a close after eight sessions of ‘training’!

Mini Police allows local primary school children, aged between four and 11, to learn more about policing, new skills and take part in numerous fun-filled activities. The initiative is funded by Lancashire's Police and Crime Commissioner Andrew Snowdon's Safer Neighbourhood Fund. 

The scheme was run by PCSO Pete Atkinson and PCSO Emma McGaughrin, who organised a range of training initiatives throughout the eight weeks, including:

  • Learning CPR and basic first aid followed, by a police fitness bleep test.

  • Getting involved in a crime scene – the Mini Police’s thumb prints were taken to identify a suspect!

  • Meeting a range of police officers, such as Armed Response, and taking a look around various police vehicles.

  • A visit from the Dog Unit, receiving a demonstration on how the dogs are trained.

  • Understanding how police work with partner agencies such as Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service, who visited and gave a fire safety talk.

  • A session about disability awareness.

The Mini Police were awarded certificates at the end of the initiative, in a ceremony with local policing Inspector James Martin.

PCSO Pete said: “The Mini Police sessions were held with Skerton St Luke’s School and have massively helped to break down barriers between the police and local community.

“Every Mini Police officer has given the programme 100% and you can see the difference it has made to them; including their individual levels of confidence and determination.

“Without the help of Skerton Community Centre providing the space and time for the sessions, the Mini Police programme couldn’t have been so successful.”

PCSO Emma said: “Being involved in the Mini Police within the first five months of my career has hugely impacted the relationships that I have within my community. It has been inspirational and uplifting working with the children.

“The ability to change people's lives for the better was a main contributing factor for my application and to see the excitement, cohesion and positivity from the school and community has really shown me that we can make a difference.

“I look forward to the future for these Mini Police Cadets and additionally to future programmes.

Deputy Head and Year 6 Teacher, Amy Garnet, said: “I wanted to express my sincere gratitude for the incredible opportunity PCSO Pete and PCSO Emma have provided to the children - becoming Mini Police has been a highlight of the year. It has been an absolute pleasure to witness the positive impact it has had on each child's confidence.

“The variety of exciting opportunities provided allowed the children to explore different areas and learn valuable skills. From learning first aid to meeting police dogs, these experiences became the highlights of their time with the officers.

“We are incredibly grateful for the opportunity provided. I want to thank the officers for their outstanding work and dedication. The programme has made a lasting impression on everyone involved.”

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