Youths benefit from intervention programme

Tonbridge News

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Youths benefit from intervention programme

Posted: 29/07/2008 14:33:14

Vulnerable teenagers from Tonbridge have completed a five-week youth diversion course at Tonbridge Fire Station, aimed at increasing their understanding of personal and social responsibility.

The multi-agency scheme, ‘Project FRED’ (Fire and Rescue Education and Development), was delivered by Kent Fire and Rescue Service’s Youth Diversion Team, in partnership with the Tonbridge Lions Club and Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council as part of a youth intervention and engagement initiative.

The course was designed to engage with young people in the Tonbridge area through a range of practical and group-based activities designed to help build self-confidence, self-esteem and discipline.

Through interactive learning, a number of topics and their consequences were explored, including arson and deliberate fire setting, fire safety, hoax calls and road traffic collisions and how these issues have a devastating effect on victims and the wider community.

Youth Diversion Officer Bob Cannell said: “The course is designed to encourage team working and to challenge the young people’s attitudes, and it was rewarding to see how involved they became with each of the activities as the weeks passed. They should be proud of the hard work and effort they put in.”

On completion, the young people received certificates by KFRS and were also presented with special t-shirts by Tonbridge Lions Club President Jon Cox to mark their achievements. Mr Cox said: “Tonbridge Lions were very pleased to have initiated the first course of its kind in the Tonbridge area to help young people.”

Alison Finch, Crime Reduction Co-ordinator at Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council said: “We are pleased with the progress that these young people have made on the scheme. We hope that what they have learnt will be of benefit both to them and to the community where they live.”

As this pilot scheme has been successful it is anticipated that the project will now be expanded and rolled out to include other young people in the borough.


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