Blaby police volunteers win Volunteer Team of the Year award for the fourth time

The team of police volunteers at Blaby are being presented with the Force Volunteer Team of the Year award for the fourth time in five years today (Wednesday March 6th 2013).

The ten strong team will have their dedication and commitment recognised at an awards ceremony this evening and will receive a certificate from the Chief Constable, Simon Cole. They will now be nominated for the prestigious national police volunteer team award which they have already won three times in the last four years.

The volunteers put the needs of the victim of crime at the heart of everything they do ‘helping people to help themselves.’ They work alongside officers at Blaby local policing unit tasked directly by them. Sometimes working in a preventative way, talking to community groups to help them understand ‘what the burglar sees’. On other occasions they follow up directly in the homes of victims of crime to show them what they can do to strengthen their property. They also provide a service to Blaby residents through the police or Blaby District Council to provide evidence of crime, anti-social behaviour, or domestic abuse using low cost cameras.

In their activity in setting up ‘No Cold Calling Zones’ they have added an extra dimension by following up zone violations. They have recently approached a national advisory body to try and change policy for nuisance door to door surveys.

In a recent initiative to reduce lead theft from churches, they have developed a protection strategy that churches can use to protect themselves and have coupled it with a live pilot project to ensure its effectiveness.

The team say they work best when given a project to solve, developing their own processes, training their own teams and funding their own administrative costs without being a drain on police resources.

Inspector Sanj Pattani, Commander of Blaby Local Policing Unit, said; “For yet another year the Blaby District Police Support Volunteers have again demonstrated their impact on the local community and their significant contribution to the LPU. Although they have been in existence since 2002 they will not stand still and have continued to evolve in 2013. They remain self funded and are making good use of technology which has enabled them to effectively support victims and those who are most needy. I am delighted that their dedication and commitment has once again been recognised.”

This is how the volunteers reacted when they heard of the award:

Jeremy Collingridge said; “It is an extraordinary privilege for our team to work alongside our police colleagues to help bring the kind of policing that our community wants and do it to the best of our ability.”

Chris Ainge, said; “It is great recognition for what we know we do to provide help and support to the community.”

Shabbir Aslam, added; “A great achievement for our team, helping our diverse community to be safer. I have been pleased to apply my own particular skills to our success.”

Cliff Branson, said; “It’s very good recognition of what the group is doing. I love joining in with the group when I can. The group is so keen on helping our community.”

Nigel Calver, added; “Winning for the fourth time, I feel elated to know that we are recognised by our police colleagues for what we do

Gay Dent, said; “We are delighted to receive recognition but this is perhaps secondary to that from the victims of crime we visit.”

Lorna Murphy Welch said; “I am really chuffed, nice to see our work has been appreciated yet again”

And finally Margaret Jones said; “It is wonderful for us to be recognised for the work we do helping the vulnerable and victims of crime.”

Throughout 2013, recruiting has began for up to 90 further volunteers specifically to support the new Beacon Officer role on the Safer Neighbourhood Teams (SNTs) and others to support the whole SNTs with community initiatives. If you would like to become a volunteer please call 101.

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