Junior Citizen - Photo compilation
Junior Citizen - Photo compilation

The Junior Citizen scheme returned to Barrow on 12 June after a three year break due to Covid 19.

The Junior Citizen scheme is a programme which was originally designed in Barrow over 25 years ago. It was created to deliver training to enable children to appropriately deal with situations that they may encounter in their lives.  This scheme won the Love Barrow Awards in 2015

The programme, organised in partnership between Cumbria Constabulary and Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service, ran over a two-week period from 12 June and was held at Barrow Fire Station.

The scheme aims to keep young people in Barrow safe by giving them an understanding and awareness across a range of safety topics. This year there were sessions on the following areas:

  • water safety
  • drugs, alcohol and vaping
  • first aid and the recovery position
  • online safety
  • fire safety and calling 999
  • anti-social behaviour and hate crime

This was done through practical scenarios, videos and workshops which encouraged the young people to think through the problems that they were confronted with and resolve them successfully.

Jo Smith, Acting Neighbourhood Policing Team Inspector in Barrow said: “This is a great initiative and one that has been sadly missed since 2019 so it’s great to see this back in Barrow.

“The inputs are not only relevant to the problems and struggles our young people may face today, but they hopefully provide them with some tools which can be used throughout their lives to help keep themselves and their communities safe.”

Around 700 young people from over 20 local schools attended and received inputs from officers in Cumbria Constabulary’s Neighbourhood Policing Team and Child Centred Policing team, as well as Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service firefighters, the Coastguard team, NHS and Drop Zone.

Cath Corkhill from Drop Zone, who helped deliver the session on anti-social behaviour and hate crime, said: “Drop Zone is a youth organisation which aims to raise aspirations and achievements of young people through support and education.

“It is massively important to run events like this for young people, especially before they head off to secondary school. The sessions give them the tools to deal with issues they may face as they get older”.

Mrs Robb, Year 6 teacher at Dane Ghyll primary school, who were the first school to take part this year, added: “It’s brilliant to have Junior Citizen back up and running in Barrow. It’s vital our children learn this type of information from the various services involved before they go to secondary school.

“They got the opportunity to listen to the different speakers and get to see them in their jobs, sharing awareness”.

Any local businesses who feel they could support this fantastic programme to enable Junior Citizen to continue in years to come please contact Acting Inspector Jo Smith via: joanne.smith@cumbria.police.uk for more information.