A GROUP of youngsters have been made junior PCSOs after completing a pioneering new course.
Fourteen children aged 11 and 12 undertook the course around the Stubbington area, which saw them visit an old people’s home, spend time at a fire station, learn first aid from paramedics, steer ships in a simulator at HMS Collingwood and meet police dogs.
The scheme was the brainchild of PCSO Claire Martin and PCSO Emma Stone, who collaborated with the Crofton Lions to organise the group of willing learners.
The group even undertook a litter pick in the pouring rain.
Vicky Stabler from the Crofton Lions said: ‘The Lions got involved because we felt it is a good community initiative.
‘It’s great to get the young involved and for them to learn more about the local emergency services.’
The youngsters were presented with their certificates of honour by ward councillor Arthur Mandry at the Foster Room, Gosport Road, Stubbington.
Reece Bell, Evan Morgan, Harrison James, Deklan Pottle, Lee Fitzjohn, Adam Weaver, Bethany Fisher, Thomas Sandle, Megan Schroeder, Jordyn Dimmer, Sophie Jones, Scott Macey, James Westcombe and Sophie Chant all qualified as junior PCSOs.
Thomas Sandle, 11, said: ‘I enjoyed it all. I want to become a detective and I got to learn about the police.’
Megan Schroeder, 12, said: ‘I liked going in the ship simulator.
‘It’s on flat ground but the simulator makes it feel like you are really moving. It was fun.’
Scott Macey, 12, said: ‘The fire station was good as we got to go in the fire truck.’
His mum, Debbie Macey, said: ‘Scott got so much enjoyment from the course.
‘I am just glad that the PCSOs are encouraging them to experience things they wouldn’t otherwise experience in life.’
Alison Dimmer watched her daughter Jordyn Dimmer collect her certificate and said: ‘I am really proud of her.’
PCSO Stone said: ‘As the weeks have progressed the group have really engaged with us.’
And PCSO Martin added: ‘I hope everyone who attended has learned something and enjoyed it.’
The two PCSOs plan to organise another course early next year through the Oasis at Titchfield Youth Club.