As part of the Community Safety Partnership plan AVDC hosted a major event last Friday [28 June] for local schools, exploring a range of issues including on-line safety, mental and emotional health, healthy relationships, personal safety and scam awareness. 160 Year 6 pupils spent a day at The Gateway participating in a range of interactive workshops, exploring various exhibition stands - and even had the opportunity to try on police safety clothing.
The Year 6 pupils, from Turnfurlong Junior School, Haydon Abbey School, Bedgrove Junior School and Ashmead Combined School, who will be going up to secondary school next academic year, will face new challenges and risks. There were a number of workshops looking at on-line safety, child exploitation, healthy relationships and mental health and emotional wellbeing delivered by McAfee, Barnardo's RUSAFE and Bucks Mind.
There were also a range of stands in The Street supported by Nat West MoneySense, Bucks Fire & Rescue, Thames Valley Police, Barnardo’s RUSAFE, Bucks Mind and AVDC's community safety team - covering scams, personal resilience, fire and water safety, the Safe Places Scheme - and an opportunity to look at and try on police uniforms and protective clothing.
Councillor Mark Winn, AVDC cabinet member for Communities said: “The move from primary to secondary school is a exciting step in children's lives. We hope that this day, along with the other guidance they receive in school, will help to prepare them for the next step in their lives: recognising risks and knowing what to do if they encounter them. So for example, if they are targeted by a groomer where to turn for help, how to ensure they don’t become involved in an inappropriate relationship and how to prevent themselves becoming a victim of bullying.
"This day wouldn't have been possible without the support of a number of different organisations and of course all the children that took part and I would like to thank them on behalf of AVDC for their help and participation”.