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Introducing Police Support Volunteers in National Volunteers' Week

As we come to the end of National Volunteers' Week which runs from 1 to 7 June and seeks to celebrate volunteers across the UK, we highlight the roles of our Police Support Volunteers whose roles assist and enhance the normal day-to-day work undertaken by police officers and police staff.

The volunteer opportunities vary from one location to another, depending on local needs; two of our Police Service Volunteers (PSVs) explain why they volunteer with West Mercia Police....

Bill Morris volunteers for his local policing team in Shrewsbury.

He tells us: "I find that volunteering adds purpose and companionship to each week and provides an opportunity to share skills, interests, knowledge and experience to actively support the community which supports me. Even at 80, there is still plenty one can do in one's own time and own way to enhance the quality of our public services.

"My current role is to draft relevant alerts and reports of incidents which can be circulated by Safer Neighbourhood Teams to local subscribers to the Community Messaging Service (CMS).

"I have always been interested in police forces' statutory responsibility under the Crime & Disorder Act 1999 to keep the public informed about incidents, levels of crime and police activity, in a language which was easily understood by everyone.

"As a result, I was enrolled as a volunteer by Shropshire's local policing team 15 years ago to help them to maintain good communication with local residents as local police officers did not always have time to trawl through all the incident reports to identify the ones of relevance to watch groups and interested citizens.

" I like to believe that in some way my years of volunteering have covered some simple tasks and have allowed the teams of professionals I work with to get on with their jobs more effectively.

"I have had a great deal of fun and satisfaction being a member of the teams I have volunteered for and believe that we should all actively contribute to our communities and care for our carers."

Sharon Summers volunteers with local policing teams in Evesham and Droitwich.

She tells us: "I started volunteering 22 years ago at Broadway Police station on the front counter. We were the first ever scheme in the country so a lot was riding on our success! It started as three hours a week which slowly increased until I was then training any new volunteers.

"Our team ran the front counter, dealt with lost and found property, gave directions, passed messages on to officers, dealt with reports of crime and shared information with the local Neighbourhood Watch Team.

"These days I assist with administration at Evesham and Droitwitch police stations and also send out communications via the Community Messaging Service (CMS).

"In my current volunteer administrator role, I know that officers don't have to worry about ordering stationery, completing forms or reporting any issues within the station, as I can do that for them.

"I continue to send the CMS messages out on each shift and ensure new officers have everything that they need to help them in their new job. I also greet workmen who require access to the station and show them what work needs to be done.

"By volunteering I feel I'm helping the police in a small way and complete essential tasks that they don't always have the time to do."

To find out more about West Mercia Police Support Volunteers, visit: https://www.westmercia.police.uk/article/2417/Police-Support-Volunteers

Posted at: 4.45pm, Friday, 7 June, LK, Corporate Communications

Published 07/06/19