This year, for the first time, every rural school in
Dorset will be visited by the award winning Blitz
Blitz is a multi-agency
initiative between Dorset Police, Dorset Safe Schools and
Communities Team (SSCT), Dorset Fire and Rescue Service, Shadows,
Dorset Primary Care Trust, Dorset Trading Standards and Soloman
The project was launched in November 2007 with
the aim to inform and educate young people about the consequences
of, and risks associated with drinking alcohol.
Alcohol-related crime in Dorset County has
gone down by two per cent since the launch. This equates to 437
fewer crimes in 2008/09 compared with 2007/08.
Each day-long off-curriculum Blitz event
involves a live theatre performance called ‘Last Orders’ performed
by Soloman Productions. Pupils also take part in alcohol and
anti-social behaviour workshops and various interactive activities
including the use of ‘beer goggles’, where they can experience the
sensation of being drunk.
The Safe Schools and Communities Team from
Dorset Police delivers a workshop which looks at anti-social
behaviour and underage drinking. This workshop is aimed at
providing young people with diversion strategies that they can use
to remove themselves from a number of high-risk situations.
Dorset Police officers are featured in the
workshops, along representatives from partner organisations such as
Dorset Fire & Rescue Service – focusing on hoax calls and arson
- and Shadows, Dorset’s confidential drug and alcohol service for
Since 2007, a total of 28 secondary schools
(which equates to more than 5,700 year nine pupils in rural Dorset)
have benefited from the special workshops and theatre
This year, during November and December 2009,
21 schools in Dorset County division (which includes Weymouth,
Portland, Beaminster, Dorchester, Sherborne, Christchurch,
Sturminster Newton, Ferndown, Shaftesbury, Wimborne and Purbeck)
have signed up to receive a visit from the Blitz team.
Safe Schools and Communities Officer, Geoff
Calloway, who is based in Weymouth, said: “Education is the key
when getting important messages across. Blitz is fast becoming one
of the key events in the school calendar.
“The idea of the day is to make it fun and
informative and hopefully, young people will go home with a new
found understanding of the dangers and risks involved with drinking
“Always drink responsibly and consider the
consequences for you and your family and friends.”
Linzi Holt, Prevention Policy Manager at
Dorset Fire and Rescue Service, said: "Arson and hoax calls are a
recognised form of anti-social behaviour and Dorset Fire and Rescue
Service deal with these types of incidents on a regular basis.
“By helping to deliver Blitz we are able to educate
and influence the young people of Dorset into the consequences of
alcohol related incidents and give them the opportunity to reflect
on the outcomes of their own or their friends behaviour.
“Blitz allows students to address issues in a
constructive way with external facilitators, such as Firefighters,
thus supporting the Citizenship element of the National
A new website has been set up for students and
teachers interested in Blitz. This guide lists all the
organisations, businesses and companies which offer discounts as
part of the scheme.
For more information, visit http://www.blitzdorset.org.uk/