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National Volunteers’ Week: the volunteers putting in extra hours during COVID-19

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North Yorkshire Police is taking the opportunity to say ‘thank you’ to their 350 Police Support Volunteers this National Volunteers Week (Monday 1 June – Sunday 7 June).

Police Volunteers from Filey and Eastfield relaunched Operation Cracker, an initiative to support residents with information to keep them healthy and safe during their self-isolation

The team of ‘wonderful’ volunteers come from all walks of life and backgrounds covering a number of roles, who have between them volunteered 12,319 hours of their time over the last year supporting North Yorkshire Police.

Throughout the year, they volunteer across a range of bespoke roles including Mobile Rural Watch, Welfare Checkers, Vehicle Checkers, Cybercrime Awareness Ambassadors, Chaplains, and Role Players who help to train officers, to name but a few, helping to make a difference in North Yorkshire.

Unfortunately, while many volunteer roles had to be suspended in recent months due to the outbreak of COVID-19 in the country, some of the force’s volunteers have been able to adapt their roles to enable them to continue helping out in any way they can.

Over on the Yorkshire Coast, Police Support Volunteers recently relaunched Operation Cracker, an initiative to support vulnerable and older residents with information to keep them healthy and safe during their self-isolation.

Sally Lewis is one of the volunteers in York helping to check in on some of the city’s most isolated individuals

Working on-line from their homes the team of volunteers created a  special booklet with information on social distancing, top tips on coping with self-isolation, mental wellbeing, unwanted calls, crime prevention, and a list of useful contact numbers for local agencies.

In York, Police Support Volunteers have been working with some of the city’s most isolated individuals to ensure they have been receiving their food parcels and medication deliveries and provide support with concerns around financial difficulties.

These calls have been lifesaving to some individuals who have found themselves in total isolation with no family or neighbours to check in on them.

In Northallerton, four of the force’s volunteer Vehicle Checkers have been busy at HQ in recent weeks helping to look after the vehicles used during the Covid-19 response. While vehicle checking at other sites was suspended, this pool of vehicles was identified as requiring vehicle checkers to help keep them operational.

The work included usual weekly checks as well as cleaning all internal touch-points with antibacterial wipes, external cleaning, topping up engine fluid levels, running the engines for a time and refuelling.

From Thirsk, Police Support Volunteer Robert Fox has been volunteering full-time in recent months picking and packing clothing and equipment that’s been requested by officers and staff and delivering PPE to police stations.

Natasha Almond, the Citizens in Policing Coordinator Manager at North Yorkshire Police, said:

“It’s really important that we recognise and celebrate the fantastic work of volunteers within North Yorkshire Police.  Volunteers don’t replace employed Police Officers and Police Staff, but they do carry out important activities that complement the work of our regular employees.

“I am immensely proud of all our volunteers who so selflessly give their time to help us make a real difference in North Yorkshire. On behalf of everyone in our policing family, thank you for everything you do.”

As a former Special Constable herself and the National Police Chiefs’ Council’s (NPCC) lead for Citizens in Policing, National Volunteers’ Week is a celebration that is very close to Chief Constable Lisa Winward’s heart. She said:

“I am immensely proud of all our volunteers. So, on behalf of the force and our communities, I would like to say a big thank you to each and every one of you, for your continued passion, contribution and commitment. Every day, you help us make a real difference in North Yorkshire.”

To keep up with the online activities during National Volunteers Week, please follow #VolunteersWeek on Facebook, Twitter and Instragram or visit North Yorkshire Police’s website.

Anyone interested in joining North Yorkshire Police as a volunteer is encouraged to visit the website to find out further details: northyorkshire.police.uk/jobs

Vehicle Checkers Richard Thompson (left) and Stuart Moat (right) are part of the team of four volunteers helping to keep the vehicles used for Op Talla operational
Police Support Volunteer Robert Fox has been volunteering full-time in recent months

 

Last modified: June 5, 2020