SOUTHAMPTON’S first volunteer police cadets have proven such a success that the scheme is being rolled out across Hampshire.
Hampshire Constabulary’s first 74 recruits celebrated their passing out at a special ceremony attended by the Chief Constable Andy Marsh and Hampshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Hayes.
Now the force it getting ready to sign up hundreds more as they look to set up seven more schemes around the force in September which they hope will see 250 more volunteer police cadets.
The passing out ceremony at Netley was the climax of the first two pilot units in Southampton with each recruit completing a ten-week induction programme.
This saw cadets learning team working and leadership skills, meeting various departments within the police and gaining a recognised first aid qualification.
The scheme is designed to get more young people, aged between 13 and 18, to interact with the police, as well as encourage the spirit of adventure and good citizenship.
Now that their induction is complete, the cadets will be volunteering with local policing and community initiatives, starting with a policing operation which is to be conducted in Southampton later this month.
They will also be assisting the organisers of the New Forest Show during their summer holidays, as well as taking part in the first Hampshire Constabulary annual camp in August.
PC Steve Swift, Force Cadet Leader, said: “This is a fantastic scheme aimed at improving the future potential of young people as well as providing the constabulary with an excellent form of positive engagement with young people and the community.
“However, this is a completely voluntary scheme which relies on the kind and generous donations from individuals and organisations.”
Anyone who wishes to provide assistance or make a contribution to support this scheme should email PC Swift at . Those interested in becoming a cadet should visit www.hampshire.police.uk.