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Bradford Police Summer Camp leads to fall in crime
Bradford’s innovative Police Summer Camp is making a difference to the quality of life for local people.
Anti-social behaviour in the Bradford South Division reduced by 168 incidents – 19 per cent – compared to the previous year, during the camp in August.
Students in Bradford College’s public services department joined forces with police to design diversionary events for eight to 15-year-olds to help alleviate boredom and provide positive ways to channel their energy.
The Police Summer Camp gave more than 240 children in the city the opportunity to participate in a series of sporting activities with Bradford City Football Club, Yorkshire Rams, Bradford Dragons and Bradford Bulls.
Other activities on offer included cooking with Jamie’s Ministry of Food, Olympic boxing skills with the Police Boxing Club, basic self-defence, an anti-social behaviour workshop and an arson and hoax calls workshop with West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service.
Students helped police to create and implement the week-long camp.
Course tutor Nosheen Qamer said: “It has allowed us to open up the camp to the entire Bradford district as well as showcase the opportunities available to young people interested in continuing with education.
“Our students gained real-life work experience, developing employability skills at a time when youth unemployment is an issue.”
The scheme provided an opportunity for young people to meet their local Neighbourhood Policing Team officers and discuss issues.
Mrs Qamer said a road safety demonstration by West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service showed young people the impact of a road traffic accident and cutting casualties out of a vehicle.
“Hopefully the realities will deter joyriding and dangerous driving in the future,” she said.
“Young people have been given the chance to meet police staff from their neighbourhoods and have developed trusting relationships with them. We hope that this will allow them to come forward with any concerns they may have in the future. We want to work with our communities to prevent crime from happening in the first place, by showing young people the consequences of crime as well as providing them with an alternative.
“This will help us to continue to break the cycle of anti-social behaviour and low-level crime from progressing on to more serious crimes.”
PCSO Chris Cahill said: “We have been working with youngsters from Bradford, not only to improve the relationship between the community and police, but also to show these youngsters they do have positive role models that can help them build on their goals and aspirations for the future.”