Kevin Christian – from client to employee

October 29th, 2016 by

A life worth fighting for with his little boy and a job he’d longed for were the motivation Kevin Christian needed to go kevin-christianfrom client to employee with Addaction Cornwall.

Last month Kevin started working within the criminal justice team based at Truro as a recovery worker.

The 35-year-old first came across Addaction when he spent time at the charity’s Chy residential centre recovering from substance misuse issues.

He said: “In the estate I grew up on, in Penzance, drugs were pretty rife and taking drugs was normal. For me it was an escape from a chaotic home life. When my son Jamie came along I had to ask my sister to look after him knowing where I lived, with what I was doing, was no place for him. But I wanted to be his father and took the opportunity to go to Chy and achieved recovery for him.

Kevin began to volunteer as a peer to peer supporter, encouraging others, raising awareness of the hepatitis C virus and inspiring people to get tested and treated. He also ran aftercare groups at Chy.

After around 12 months, Kevin was offered a job at Chy doing night support as an engagement worker one day a week on Sundays. A full time position then came up as a residential worker at Chy and Kevin grasped the opportunity and got it. His role was to run groups, sleep on site, engage with clients and make sure the house was running smoothly.

Although thriving on the work, it meant Kevin was only able to see his little boy Jamie one night a week. He said: “I love Chy, but I’ve always wanted to work with people who are still using, but back as a service user that goal was unreachable. Thanks to Addaction supporting me through training and qualifications, I was able to apply for a job when it came up and started just over a month ago. Not doing nights, I now get to spend more time with Jamie, who is off to school in September.

 

Kevin completed the accredited Addaction training course in drug and alcohol work as well as a Level 2 in Counselling at college.

Manager at Addaction Chy, Ross Dunstan, said: “It’s great to see Kevin come through the programme at Chy all those years ago and then give back to the treatment service in this way. Successful achievements like Kevin’s are what make the job worthwhile. Congratulations.”

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Youth Offending Service Blazes a Trail

October 27th, 2016 by

“An inspirational process that offers children, young people and adults regular opportunities to achieve and develop confidence and self-esteem, through hands on learning experiences in a woodland environment”.

Forest Education Initiative 2005

Friday 7th October 2016 saw Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly Youth Offending Service (YOS) taking the lead in an enterprising multi-agency collaboration called Forest Skills, which is part of a wider initiative from the service called YOS Outdoors.

Young people were challenged by beinyosg taken out of their comfort zone and placed in an unfamiliar environment to learn new skills and begin to see themselves and others differently through working together.

Referrals were sought from the Youth Offending Service and partner agencies Gweres Kernow, Careers South West, Devon and Cornwall Police, Yzup (Cornwall’s young people’s drug and alcohol agency run by Addaction) and Gweres Tus Yowynk: Specialist Adolescent Service, which has recently merged with YOS to create a single team.

On a mild autumn morning but under grey skies threatening rain, we gathered in the car park of the Kingswood in the Pentewan Valley, picked up the equipment and trekked deep into the wood. We began by introducing ourselves with an icebreaker and then immediately explored our surroundings so that as well as our safety being ensured, we also respected the environment. We then encouraged and supported the young people to start fires – the purpose of which to link empowerment with responsibility.

“Now you have the power to create a fire from a spark; some cotton wool and a few dry twigs that you have been shown how to choose and collect – now look after it safely. Especially if you would like a hot cup of tea and not to mention warming veggie stew and rice for lunch later!”

Then it was time to tune into the environment a little more by listening and trusting the rest of the group. Each person was led through the trees blindfold; encouraged to feel a particular tree and then led back. It’s remarkable how people can be encouraged to tap into often neglected senses. After initial uncertainty people were able to really clue into the terrain, heeding smells (fire and wood smoke mainly), the wind direction and sounds to create a picture in the mind of where they are and where they have been. This dispels assumptions such as: “I’ll never be able to do that” resulting in the comments “Oh! I did it. I can do it!” So the new found skills were put to immediate use with a good old game of hide and seek. NB all participants under the age of 15!

After lunch it was time to go into the construction industry when in groups of three, people built a shelter in the woods capable of keeping the rain off and retaining heat. Only using natural matter and which had stopped growing, structures where created using ingenuity and team work. Structures were then judged and “valued” by our resident woodland “estate agent” PC J. Dorman.

The day ended by the group coming together to share their experiences and learning. This was a moment where each participant was able to share what they had achieved and it was clear that each really valued the learning and felt genuinely proud of their achievements – staff and young people alike!

Feedback included: “I enjoyed the trust games, I didn’t think I’d be able to do it with a blindfold but I managed it!” and “I loved making a fire I’ve never done it before”.

Young people who had never met and whose lives had each had challenging aspects to them coalesced into an efficient and co-operative team solving problems through discussion and respect.

This project highlights the skills and characters of young people who work with YOS and its partner agencies and also the positive outcomes able to be achieved with tailored interventions.

ANDREW KNIGHT, Youth Offending Service Assistant: October 2016.

The equipment for the Forest Skills day has been provided by a generous grant from The West Cornwall Youth Trust.

Many thanks to the police and specifically to PC J Dorman for his contribution to the day and also to the YOS and GTY who also provided staff for the day.

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Joint neighbourhood shoplifting operation

October 27th, 2016 by

A joint neighbourhood shoplifting operation has been conducted by Camborne, Pool and Redruth neighbourhood teams with the assistance of Cornwall Fire, Rescue and Community Safety Service’s ASB Caseworker. The patrols involved plain clothed undercover police and surveillance, sworn officers, Police Community Support Officers and the ASB Team who were patrolling with Body Worn Video Recording Devices.

asb-work

The operation took place in the towns of Camborne and Redruth respectively and although the main focus of the operation was shoplifting several other issues arose which were dealt with as a result of the police and ASB Teams presence in the towns.

 

The issues that were dealt with are as follows:

  • 1 ASB issue which was dealt with by using Community Resolution
  • 2 offences of using a handheld device whilst driving a motor vehicle which was dealt with by both drivers being reported for the offence for consideration of prosecution, it is now worth noting that anyone caught texting whilst driving could receive 6 points rather than 3 under new legislation that is about to be released
  • 2 shoplifting offences took place, one where £90 worth of items were stolen from Boots Chemist this suspect was detained by officers, all stolen items were seized and the crime is ongoing.

The second offence was £60 worth of meat which was stolen from Iceland Supermarket by a male and female which consequently led to a property search and the male was later charged with theft of a handbag which had occurred 2 weeks prior. The crime for the stolen meat is also an ongoing investigation

  • Finally, officers dealt with a stop and search of a vehicle which led to a seizure of a transit van and four males being escorted to Camborne Custody Centre for further questioning.

Due to the positivity from members of the public and local businesses, the neighbourhood team and ASB team will continue to facilitate similar operations in the local areas on a more regular basis. These operations will hopefully provide all with a high visibility presence and reassurance.

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Penzance and Newlyn Pubwatch

October 20th, 2016 by

A group behind a scheme to prevent alcohol-fuelled crimes in West Cornwall has been recognised nationally.

Penzance and Newlyn Pubwatch was named the winner of a national competition for the project, which recognises the work that takes place in towns and cities across the country to make pubs safe places for customers and staff.

The team in Penzance and Newlyn were presented with the Diageo National Pubwatch Award at a ceremony in the House of Commons, in front of MPs, Lords and notable names from the pub industry.

The Penzance penzance-and-newlyn-pubwatchand Newlyn Watch was praised by judges for its “early intervention” approach, which includes working with vulnerable people and substance abusers to identify problems before they become an issue. The Watch was also commended for establishing an “exceptional” range of partnerships not only with police but street pastors, Trading Standards and Addaction, a drug and alcohol treatment charity.

Judges were also particularly impressed by the Watch’s creation of a “safe places” scheme, providing places of sanctuary within pubs for people who may feel vulnerable when they’re out socialising.

Mark Baird, head of Alcohol in Society at Diageo Great Britain, said: “Penzance and Newlyn represents all that is good about the National Pubwatch scheme and the work that its local organisations do.

They play a critical role in reducing crime, promoting responsible drinking and making pubs a safe and enjoyable place for customers and staff.

Everyone, no matter who they are, should feel safe when they go out for a drink at the pub, or for a meal.”

Laura Cockle, chair of Penzance and Newlyn Pubwatch, said: “Collaboration is key” to their scheme’s success. We’re incredibly proud to win this award. Pubwatch makes real and genuine improvements to the lives of customers, staff, and the local communities they operate in.

The work we do here in Cornwall is testament to that. We work over a 30 mile radius, supporting hundreds of pubs and making them safe, fun environments to socialise in.”

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Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO)

October 7th, 2016 by

On the 03 October  2016, Miss Gennette Ford was issued a life time Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) at Cornwall Magistrates Court.

ford

The application which was made in partnership between Cornwall Council’s Anti Social Behaviour Team and Devon and Cornwall Police, prohibits Ford from:

  1. Entering the bounded area known as Camborne,
  2. Being found in a state of drunkenness in Truro City Centre and
  3. Being in the possession of an open container of alcohol in Truro City Centre.

Dorian Thomas from Cornwall Council’s ASB Team stated “Ford has had countless attempts to support her through challenging times in her life. It is unacceptable to behave in such a manner while intoxicated and to be out of control. Members of the public have been subjected to Fords persistent bad behaviour, foul language, spitting and total disregard for the public and the Community for far too long. The latest incident resulted in an assault on a Police Officer while carrying out their duty. With this in mind and the long history of support from various agencies we had no choice to act with the full force and powers at our disposal.”

Further to the behaviour occurring in the Camborne area, Fords behaviour migrated to Truro City Centre where she continued to affect the public and agencies attempting to assist her. Previous interventions such as voluntary warnings were imposed to assist Ford to choose an alternative direction in life. Many support agencies had been involved with Ford to help turnaround her behaviour however with all the support and great work by agencies, Ford chose to ignore the warnings and support.

Dorian added “The public must have the confidence and reassurance to report anti-social behaviour. By reporting this type of behaviour will assist in making our towns a more pleasant place to socialise and live. We do accept that many people will have challenging times within their lifetime, which we will work with and assist in finding an alternative lifestyle for them but to change they must make a commitment to change themselves guided by the many support services in the community.”

Ford was also given a substantial prison sentence for Breach of the Criminal Behaviour Order and the assault on the attending Police Officer.

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Keep safe this winter – free electric blanket checks offered after 1 in 3 found unsafe last year

October 1st, 2016 by

eb-bare-wire-into-plugElectric blankets should be tested every three years and Cornwall Trading Standards and Cornwall Fire and Rescue are offering a FREE electric blanket safety check to ALL residents of Cornwall at 10 county-wide locations during September/October.

With potentially colder weather just around the corner, many residents across Cornwall will be looking to place potentially ageing untested electric blankets back on their beds ready for winter.

Every year around the country there are around 1000 home fires caused by faulty electric blankets with 20 people killed and 250 injured. Last year Cornwall safety checks found 1in 3 blankets were faulty when tested.

“Our aim is to help reduce the risk of fire in people’s homes.  These events have proved to be very successful over the years including us identifying bare wires, faulty controllers, no overheating protection, insulation breakdown of the internally stitched in wires and known product recalls that consumers had missed from not completing guarantee cards. These blankets could have caused serious fires and injuries so it proves this free service can make a huge difference to peoples safety across Cornwall” says Andy Burnside of Cornwall Trading Standards.

Consumers are also invited to bring along small home appliances like electric fires, plug in radiators, fan heaters, toasters and kettles to be ‘portable appliance tested’ for only £1 per item. As part of these Consumer Safety Events we will also be offering advice on nuisance call blocking, community policing, product recalls and home fire safety advice.

As this is open to all residents you can book your own, a family member, a friend, or neighbours blanket a free test by calling  01208 893133 or you can just turn up on the day. Testing only takes around 10 minutes and will give you the peace of mind that you will be safe this winter.

If your blanket or small appliance fails on the day and needs replacing we are offering 10% money off vouchers and entry in to a prize draw to win a £20 gift voucher, courtesy of HBH Woolacotts.

The last remaining events will take place at the following venues:

Tuesday 11 October   

9am – 12pm Truro – Age UK Day Centre, St Clement Street, TR1 1EQ

1pm –  4pm Redruth – Cornwall Neighbourhoods for Change, The Elms, 61 Green lane, TR15 1LS

Watch Manager Mark Pratten added: “Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service provide a free home fire safety service throughout the year, this includes replacement of old or defective smoke detection free of charge and advice on escape plans and carbon monoxide awareness information, for more information please contact 0800 3581 999 or go to www.cornwall.gov.uk/fire.”

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Safer Cornwall are a working partnership involving: