Junior Neighbourhood Watch Scheme launch

Dorset Police launch the county’s first Junior Neighbourhood Watch Scheme (JNWS) in Verwood.

Sergeant Nikki Loftus and PCSO Robin Morgan introduced the scheme at Emmanuel Church of England Middle School. Children took part in a ‘Design a Logo’ competition in December 2014.

Students were asked to design a logo for the JNWS, which was judged by PS Loftus and PCSO Morgan. The winner of the competition was Erin Bruce from Year Six.

The scheme, which has been funded by Christchurch and East Dorset District Council, is designed to be a fun and informative way for the pupils of Emmanuel to obtain an understanding and gain practical skills to help deal with current neighbourhood issues.

The students taking part in JNWS will attend an after school club for nine weeks and take part in activities which will help them to stay safe online, give them crime prevention tips, crime scene management, road safety, fire safety, personal safety, anti-social behaviour and Heath Watch.

Sergeant Nikki Loftus, previously of Verwood Safer Neighbourhood Team said: “I am really excited about this new scheme. There is nothing else like it for young people in Dorset and I am hoping that it will be a great success so that other schools in Dorset can adopt the scheme.

“It is important to build trust in young people to increase public confidence. It provides a great opportunity for the police and young people to actively engage with the community.

“We are hoping to encourage pupils to be observant and to pass on any concerns to the police or school quickly and accurately so that we can deal with problems sooner rather than later.” 

She added: “I would like to say a special thank you to Emmanuel School for trialling this Junior Neighbourhood Watch Scheme and also to Erin Bruce in Year Six who won the competition.”

Sergeant Loftus continued: “We would also like to thank Morrison’s in Verwood who provided the prize for the logo competition and for keeping us supplied with squash and biscuits throughout the club.

“We have also had support from our crime prevention officers, Crime Scene Investigation team, Community Speed Watch, Dorset Fire and Rescue and East Dorset District Council Heath Wardens.”

Mrs Jill Watson, Head of Emmanuel CoE School said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for the pupils at Emmanuel to be involved in, especially as it is the first in Dorset. The club will provide the children with many different experiences related to personal safety in the community and home and involve them in community issues”.

Issued: 23 January 2015

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