The Mini Police scheme run by neighbourhood officers in Wigan has been a bit hit.
The project sees children aged 8 to 10 from primary schools in the area, engage in activities to build a strong relationship between the young people and the police.
It’s designed to introduce children to the world of law enforcement and instead of traditional perceptions of the police, barriers are broken down to help establish a positive connection between them.
Officers will positively engage with young people from an early age through a fun and engaging programme which will be delivered to school pupils with the support of Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) and the local neighbourhood police team.
Activities include speed enforcement, ASB and burglary awareness patrols and assisting in public events such as Remembrance Sunday parades.
The 19 children who were selected to participate in the scheme were attested into the force at Wigan Town Hall alongside senior officers in GMP’s Wigan District, mayor of Wigan Kevin Anderson, Leigh Leopards’ captain John Asiata, Wigan Warriors Women’s Team club captain Rachel Thompson, councillor Dane Anderton and Mighty Max, Wigan Warriors’ own mascot.
Chief Superintendent Ian Jones of GMP’s Wigan District, said: “It’s really great for us to have this opportunity to positively engage with Wigan’s younger generation and through utilising programmes such as this we are able to reinforce our commitment to protecting everyone in our communities.
“The programme gives our young people a sense of pride and belonging when they put on their uniform with the knowledge that their actions are doing something positive and giving back to their community.
“We will always encourage early intervention to engage young people with police and our mini police will make a really positive impact on the area where they live and go to school.
“Our younger generation are the future of Wigan and we are working hard to liaise with local schools and other support agencies to include them in keeping our area safe from crime.
“It is so valuable for us to be able to have this opportunity to engage with the new generation of Wigan and I hope one day we will see them join as police officers when they are old enough.
“We wish all the Mini Police the best of luck in their new roles with us.”