A celebration was held at Northampton’s Guildhall to mark the launch of the new Northamptonshire Emergency Services Cadets (NESC).
The NESC programme, which merges most of the existing police and fire cadet units, is believed to be the first scheme of its kind in the country to set itself up as an independent charity.
VIPs and invited guests from local councils and organisations attended the launch, which was held in the Grand Hall on Tuesday evening.
NESC is a programme aimed at 13 to 18-year-olds, which aims to give young people new skills and allow them to take an active role in supporting the work of police, fire and ambulance staff.
More than 200 young people, within eight units across the county, are now members of NESC; learning skills as diverse as first aid and basic fire fighting techniques.
Becoming a cadet involves a variety of activities, including:
– Taking on roles as part of disaster training operations with the emergency services
– Attending community events such as fun days, road safety events, the balloon festival, Silverstone Circuit events and open days
– Taking part in Remembrance Day parades
– Assisting at local rugby and football matches
– Helping with test purchase operations (alcohol and cigarettes)
– The chance to obtain a BTEC in Teamwork and Personal Development.
– Fitness development such as taking part in sports
– Training in life-saving first aid skills
– Assisting with some emergency service work such as leaflet drops
NESC chief executive Ann-Marie Lawson said: “We are thrilled to have finally launched the NESC programme, which is already proving a popular choice for the young people of Northamptonshire.
“Young people who join the scheme are usually impressed with how action-packed the programme of activities is. It’s great for all those who are interested in an eventual career in the emergency services, or for those who simply want to take up an activity that will both build their confidence and CV, as well as giving them a chance to make new friends.”
Anyone interested in joining next year’s round of cadets in September 2017 can email firstname.lastname@example.org.