Police conclude empowerment programme at St. Martin’s Government School

It’s never too early to start equipping children with positive life skills, and the Police Department has partnered up with the US Embassy to do just that. Yesterday the Police Department wrapped up a six week program on gang resistance education and conflict resolution at the St. Martin’s Government School. Plus News was there for the handing out of the awards, where we caught up with Inspector of Police Dehanne Augustine who told us more about the program.

Dehanne Augustine – Inspector of Police:
vlcsnap-2013-03-15-20h30m33s97[The purpose of the programme is] to empower the students from Standard Four to Standard Six, so they could come back.  Those that are already a victim of this, and those who we believe will soon be a part of it without the proper tools. Then you have the Great Summer.  During the Summertime students are out of school, but then we have to make sure that at the end of the day we have something constructive to do with them during the Summertime. So the Great Summer has the components of Conflict Resolution, Survival Training, Hitch Hiking, and Sporting Events.

The program not only caters to students, but also the entire family unit.

Dehanne Augustine – Inspector of Police:
We also have the family component of Great.  The family component of Great has to do with having families instead of only the students.  The Middle and the Elementary come-back students, where 20 students leave from here, we have to look at something that will assist the families too, because we cannot empower students and the in some of these cases it’s the family that are the bad influence.  So the Great Family is a programme where all the families come together.  It happens not during the working hours.  It happens in the evening time. The families are given assignments, the lessons of activities with families.

We also spoke with the Loretta Thompson, the Principal of the St. Martin’s Government School and one of her students, Josselyn Rivera.

Loretta Thompson – Principal, St. Martin’s Government School:
vlcsnap-2013-03-15-20h30m45s217I welcome the Great Programme in our school because it’s a very good programme that helps children to solve their problems, help them with conflict resolution, and help them to build a strong self-image. We kmow that in today’s society we have a lot of problems that are happening.  So this program is going to help our young people to grow up to be good citizens in our country.

Josselyn Rivera – Student:
vlcsnap-2013-03-15-20h31m03s144I had learned a lot from Mr Sho, what he had taught me. You have to do the right thing.  You’re not to do the bad thing.  We don’t need to break the law.  We need the law for the school and every Department that we have in our country.  We need to be respectful.

The program is the first of its kind, and the Police Department intends to take the initiative to other schools in the country.

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