Streetwise fun day has support of Police and Crime Commissioner
SIX thousand people came to the LV=Streetwise annual 999 day and saw how local children learn about safety. The indoor life sized village containing a high street, house, beach and train station has been used to train over 200,000 thousand school children since it was opened in 1998. The second such centre in the country it has won numerous awards and continues to make a huge difference to safety in the area.
The children’s safety education charity safety once more teamed up with all the county’s emergency services for an action packed safety day - with the spectacular chip pan fire demonstration providing audible gasps across the packed audiences.
There was something to entertain and thrill the whole family with police cars and bikes and dogs, fire engines, a live aerial rescue, street dancers, Gold Driving Academy dual control cars offering a driving experience to children of all ages – whilst the snakes from the new reptile corner competed with Darth Vader and the Storm Troopers for popularity in the celebrity photo stakes. Little ones had their faces painted, sported glitter tattoos, were provided with gruesome fake ‘wounds’ by the Casualties Union voluntary organisation to show off to friends and family, they played on the bouncy castle and met Mr Merlin and Okey Dokey the Dragon.
Alison Shelton, LV=Streetwise manager said: “It was a fun filled family day out with a real purpose. By far the most common conversations to be heard were parents asking their children ‘What can you see here that you think is dangerous?’ followed in many cases by the children, shocking their parents by responding with everything they remembered from their school visit to Streetwise!”
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Chief Fire Officer for Dorset Fire and Rescue Service, Darran Gunter said: “This is always a very special day for Dorset Fire & Rescue Service and we have really come out in force to support it. We’ve been to incidents in the home where people have got out, where they’ve had smoke detectors, where they’ve made calls to us and said the right things and they’ve said to us, the children, that’s because I’ve been to Streetwise. We are privileged that every year our contribution to the centre enables over 13,000 young people to come here and change their lives. That’s what it’s about, not just saving lives, it’s changing lives.”
Martyn Underhill was involved with the centre before he became the Police & Crime Commissioner for Dorset and attended both to support the centre and also as a trustee of the Turn Your Back knife crime charity. He said: “I help Streetwise with fundraising. I’m a great supporter of Streetwise and my step daughter is a volunteer here. I think it’s a great community initiative. This puts Dorset on the map for home, street, fire and police safety. Every part of this organisation is about keeping safe and that is a priority for me as Police & Crime Commissioner. It’s an organisation and an event that really does help the next generation to stay safe.”
James Vaughan, Dorset Police Deputy Chief Constable, added: “It’s really great to see young people engaged across a range of emergency services, learning valuable lessons in safety and citizenship. I’m immensely proud that we support the Streetwise initiative and we are very lucky to have the benefit of this facility for the children of Dorset.”