Twenty one youngsters are now part of a new pilot Volunteer Police Cadet scheme in Swindon.
This is the first time that the Force has had a cadet scheme since the 1980s and it was formally launched last night (Thursday 13 February 2014) by Chief Superintendent Paul Mills, Head of Local Policing for Wiltshire Police and Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) for Wiltshire and Swindon Angus Macpherson.
Inspector Pete Chamberlain led the implementation of the cadets pilot and said: “I have been driving this initiative from its infancy and am delighted to see 21 young people that can make a positive impact on both the neighbourhoods and communities in Swindon. This is a truly exciting venture for Wiltshire Police that I am proud to be a part of."
The cadets are aged between 13 and 17 years old and are all from the North Swindon Neighbourhood Policing Team area.
They were recruited in November 2013 and, after an initial meet and greet session in early January 2014, have now begun their training. They will eventually be involved in community events across Swindon and the rest of Wiltshire alongside police officers and special constables.
Chief Superintendent Paul Mills said: “It’s great to see the cadets pilot come to fruition and I really enjoyed meeting the young people that are making up what I hope is the first of many cadet units across the county.
“Volunteers play an important role in our mission to provide our communities with the best possible service and protect them from harm. I’m looking forward to seeing our cadets out and about within the community as soon as possible – I’m sure they will be an excellent addition to our policing family and will build some really good relationships with the public which will help ensure that young people are perceived in a positive light.”
Each week the cadets will be involved in various exercises designed to teach them about the policing service and develop their skills in areas such as teamwork and communication.
At last night’s session the cadets practiced their skills in the art of drill before PC Dom Green from the Armed Response Group (ARG) met with the cadets to give an overview of his work. PC Green also gave the youngsters a Firearms and Knife Education (FAKE) presentation to raise awareness of the risks of carrying weapons and imitation weapons.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon Angus Macpherson said: “Volunteering is something that is very close to my heart and is an important element of my Police and Crime Plan. I’m thrilled to see this police cadets scheme up and running and hope to see it rolled out across the county over the coming months.”
Although applications are closed for the pilot cadet scheme, it is hoped that after reviewing the pilot, other units will be rolled out later in the year.
To find out more please contact the cadets team email address firstname.lastname@example.org