Throughout 2020 PC Ria Featherstone, a Neighbourhood Beat Officer based at Bransholme, has been working closely with “Prison, me no way!” (PMNW) https://pmnw.co.uk/ on a local project that is aimed at helping primary school children aged 9 to 11 to be more aware of the world around them, avoid trouble, stay safe and learn about rights and responsibilities, laws, justice, the role of the courts, police, other emergency services and prisons.
The days provide a range of engaging, interactive activities that also help children to manage potentially difficult situations and be prepared for the step up towards secondary education with increased confidence better able to understand, react appropriately and protect themselves.
The project was funded by £5000 worth of funding from the Safer Hull Partnership (£3,000) and West Carr Ward local councillors (£2,000).
Speaking about her work on this amazing project PC Featherstone said, “I secured £5000 in funding last year to roll out an event day in the West Carr Ward area primary schools for the year 5 and 6s to educate them about anti-social behaviour, criminal exploitation and online bullying.
“Myself and the local PCSOs attended every event and got to know the children, and now when we are out on foot patrol we often get them asking us ‘Were you the officer that came into my school to talk about prison!’
“It was also a good opportunity for children to learn all about prison life as the staff from PMNW are mostly ex-prison officers. The children even got to see the inside of a replica cell as the event had a mobile prison cell van they can see!
“Due to the success of the joint partnership working with the Safer Hull Partnership and the West Carr Ward councillors, I have now arranged a further seven primary school events in the wider Hull area. Each school will receive the event thanks to generous funding kindly provided by local grant funders and supporters of the PMNW programme. Further days are also still to be arranged.
“The local Neighbourhood Police Team (NPT) staff for each school will attend every event, helping deliver the input to the kids.
“I am really looking forward to meeting the kids of a further seven Hull schools in April and May and I really hope that they get as much out of our events as the children have done so far. I hope that this is a partnership will continue on so even more schools get to enjoy this event and meet their local policing teams.
“This interaction with young people at this early stage in their lives can only build on the trust and confidence in both the police, prison service and people in authority. We hope that they can come to us about any problems they have and ultimately help prevent them becoming involved in crime or anti-social behaviour.”
Paul Wilkinson, CE of PMNW, said, “It is a genuine privilege to work with Ria and the team at Humberside Police.
“We firmly believe that partnership working of this nature has a massive influence on young minds and really does help build strong relationships and respect between local policing teams, children and young people and creates a better understanding of how hard the police work in helping keep them and their communities safe.”
Find out more about the Safer Hull Partnership and ‘Prison, Me, No way!’ on the following links: