Northumbria Police celebrates 300th Volunteer Police Cadet to join Duke of Edinburgh Award

27 Apr 2016 17:00 PM

Bede Academy [View Full Size]

Northumbria Police has enrolled its 300th volunteer police cadet on to the Duke of Edinburgh Award and to celebrate the news the successful candidate received a surprise visit from the Chief Constable.

Each year, new recruits on the force's Volunteer Police Cadet (VPC) scheme are given the opportunity to sign up to the Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) Award programme.

Since the scheme was first introduced in 2010 the force has enrolled 300 people on the DofE Award programme.

And with 90 percent of young people who enroll on the programme going on to successfully complete their awards Northumbria Police also has one of the highest completion rates in England and Wales.

To celebrate the news, Northumbria Police's Chief Constable Steve Ashman made a surprise visit to the 300th participant - 15 year old Chloe Warnes.

Chief Constable Ashman was joined by the Duke of Edinburgh's Nicola Meredith to surprise Chloe during her school assembly at Bede Academy this morning.

CC Ashman said: "It's fantastic news that we've now enrolled our 300th volunteer police cadet onto the Duke of Edinburgh Award programme. We're only to pleased to be supporting the programme and run it as part of our cadet scheme, it is the very essence of what the cadets are about in giving young people the opportunity to gain life changing skills that will help them succeed in life.

"Our scheme has one of the highest completion rates of the programme with 90 percent of people going on to successfully complete their award and this is down to the dedication and commitment from both cadets and their leaders and something they should all be proud of.

"I'm constantly impressed by our cadets and the work they do, the support they offer the force really is outstanding and they are an absolute credit to us. We've had some great success stories with our cadets going on to achieve great things and I've no doubt the DofE programme has helped give them the confidence to do this.

Following this morning's visit CC Ashman also commented on how impressed he was with the school.

He added: "The school had a great atmosphere and I was really impressed with what a fantastic learning environment it is which is a huge credit to the staff and pupils there."

Nicola Meredith said: "Northumbria Police are a valued Licenced Organisation and we’re delighted that they choose to offer the DofE Award as part of their Volunteer Police Cadets programme.  The results delivered are outstanding.  We would like to thank Northumbria Police for their innovation and commitment.  We look forward to our continued partnership and the next milestone where even more young people are given the opportunity to start their adventure whilst developing skills for life and work."

The DofE award helps individuals learn new skills in leadership, problem solving, communication and decision making - all of which are necessary for Volunteer Police Cadets in their role and social action and crime prevention contribution to local communities.

Over the past year cadets have supported Northumbria Police at many events including the Great North Run, Sunderland International Airshow, Kielder Marathon, Pride Festivals in both Newcastle and Sunderland, the Mela Festival and the Northumberland County Show.

The cadets have also made a contribution in tackling crime and anti-social behaviour - during a routine neighbourhood survey last year they discovered a small cannabis farm enabling police to take action and have forwarded vital information to officers that has led to the identification and arrest of offenders.

View the full news release