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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

MEA young people gain appreciation of Emergency Services at Youth Volunteer Academy

Young people in Mid and East Antrim participating in the PSNI’s Youth Volunteer Academy have had the opportunity to see firsthand how the crews of Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS) save lives on roads across the province.

The Youth Volunteer Academy is a program for young people (aged 14-17) considered “At Risk” or on the edge of crime.

The programme provides a practical way for young people to understand policing and be supportive to policing in their local area through volunteering and aims to strengthen the relationship between Police and young people, break down barriers and promote positive role models.

Neighbourhood Policing Team (NPT) officers in both Larne and Carrickfergus are engaging with young people through the programme which is designed to encourage appreciation of our Emergency Services.

Yesterday (Wednesday 16 February), NIFRS Glengormley demonstrated some of the life saving equipment that is employed to save lives in road traffic collisions. The young people were also educated on fire safety, and were able to enjoy a display of the normal operations by the crew.

The Youth Volunteer Academy has been set up by the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) in partnership with the Education Authority (EA) and Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS), with the aim of:

• Increasing awareness of Policing and its role in communities

• Encouraging appreciation of NIAS role in communities

• Encouraging young people to analyse their attitude towards Policing

• Educating young people about what constitutes an emergency

• Raising awareness of the repercussions of anti-social behaviour directed at emergency services

• Assisting young people in considering actions of risky behaviours and their consequences

• Building confidence and self-esteem

• Educating young people on basic first aid

To date the programme has seen:

• Total of 75 young people awarded OCN level 1 and NIAS first aid certificate

• Enhanced professional development of 35 EA youth workers, PSNI officers and NIAS staff

Commenting on yesterday’s event, a police spokesperson said:

“The group loved it and it’s another milestone towards completing their project!”


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