Two police constables and one Police Community Support Supervisor (PCSS) in Rotherham have recently qualified with Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council (RMBC) to become youth workers. PC Paul Gray, PC Jeannine Waller and PCSS Paul Newman will all work in partnership with RMBC youth services on operations and in youth centres throughout the area.
Working in partnership, on operation's Coverage and Staysafe, RMBC identified differences in the ways Police Officers, PCSO's and RMBC youth workers engage with young people. The training took one year to complete and covered the following subjects
· Engaging Young People
· Active Citizenship
Since completing the course PC Paul Gray and PCSS Paul Newman have arranged courses including Alcohol Awareness and have done work towards creating a safer community.
PC Paul Gray said: "This makes me more aware of the problems and issues faced by young people. The experience gained on the course will allow staff to better help and safeguard young people."
PCSS Newman said: "I have done a lot of work with young people. Since attending this training my knowledge has increased and the experience I have gained has proved invaluable for my role.”
Christine Brodhurst-Brown RMBC head of integrated youth support services commented: "In order to deliver the best possible provision for young people in Rotherham all agencies need to work together effectively. Our service values the contribution made by members of South Yorkshire Police in working with young people and particularly welcomes their involvement on our youth work training courses. These officers are blazing a trail in working with young people and should be congratulated on their achievement."
Rachel Barraclough, Locality Youth Work Manager said: “Having worked alongside these people over the last two years, the course has proven to be of great benefit. It not only gives them new tools to work with young people, but also a better understanding of both youth work and policing issues when dealing with young people. I hope they go on the complete their level three qualification.”
PC Jeannine Waller added: "Traditionally, much of police work with young people has focused on enforcement. Doing a youth work qualification has provided me with the tools to find solutions to the problems young people face and to concentrate on early intervention rather than criminalisation."