Home News UK Teenage volunteers are helping their communities stay safe – could you?

Teenage volunteers are helping their communities stay safe – could you?

7 min read

A new Volunteer Police Cadet unit is due to open in Bristol this September and we’re open for applications.

Thirty young people aged between 14 and 17 will be able to join the new unit, which will be based at the City Academy Bristol, in Easton but open to students at the Bristol Met Academy as well.

There are also vacancies from September at other units based in Bath, Bristol (in Hartcliffe, Henbury and Speedwell), South Gloucestershire (Patchway), Portishead, Street, Taunton and Weston-super-Mare.

Cadets show youngsters round a police van at Grimsby Farm community event

“Our Volunteer Police Cadets are exceptional young people” – ACC Sarah Crew

What do our volunteer cadets do?

  • Meet once a week during term time
  • Learn valuable skills including first aid, teamwork, communication and leadership
  • Go behind the scenes in policing to learn about all the different roles and responsibilities within the organisation
  • Deliver crime prevention information
  • Help provide a uniformed presence at community events
  • Enjoy sport, outdoor activities, barbecues and other events

Cadets also support us by engaging with people. Cadets have previously been involved in the Air Day in Weston-super-Mare, Bristol’s Harbour Festival and Balloon Fiesta, the Glastonbury Festival in Somerset and the Christmas concerts at The Mall, Cribbs Causeway to name a few.

Our volunteer cadets also get involved in helping their communities, with examples including:

  • last month cadets were involved in marshalling, giving first aid and showing children round a police van at Grimsby Farm community event in South Gloucestershire
  • in May cadets in Hartcliffe raised £600 for a defibrillator to be based at Broadbury Road Police Station by packing bags at a local supermarket
  • in April cadets organised a 999 day in Glastonbury, raising hundreds of pounds for causes including the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance and the hospice and neurological care charity Sue Ryder
  • in 2014 when Somerset was affected by floods the county’s cadets helped to support those affected

Assistant Chief Constable Sarah Crew said: “Our Volunteer Police Cadets are exceptional young people who are prepared to give up their time to help keep their communities safe. I firmly believe that being involved in the cadet scheme brings out the best in these teenagers and will stand them in good stead no matter what career path they choose to follow.”

“It’s truly inspiring to see young people take such passion and interest in policing” – PCC Sue Mountstevens

Police and Crime Commissioner Sue Mountstevens said: “Avon and Somerset Police have a very strong Volunteer Police Cadet team and the launch of a unit in Easton will be a valuable addition to the areas’ local policing. Residents continually tell me of their appreciation for the cadets, not only as a reassuring and visible presence but also for the difference they make in keeping local communities safe. It’s truly inspiring to see young people take such passion and interest in policing and I wish the new unit every success.”

The Avon and Somerset Police Volunteer Cadet scheme is open to young people aged between 14 and 17 who live or study in the Avon and Somerset policing area.

Its aims include:

  • promoting a practical understanding of policing among young people
  • encouraging the spirit of adventure and good citizenship
  • supporting local policing priorities through volunteering and giving young people a chance to be heard
  • inspiring young people to participate positively in their communities

Could you be a cadet? Find out more and complete an online application on our website  – applications close onFriday 22 July.

We’re also looking for people with experience of working with young people and good communication skills to help run our cadet sessions – you don’t need to have policing experience. If you’re interested, find out more.

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