This week Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne is working with partners to raise awareness of the work of REBOOT – a unique early intervention programme that has helped 1099 young people in Sussex since 2019.
With funding from the PCC, Sussex Police is working with NHS Partnership Trust, Youth Offending Service and local charities in order to deliver this programme.
This five-stage referral process engages young people in activities of interest to them, and away from negative behaviour they may be displaying within their community. It is a non-criminal approach to diversion that invests in young people’s futures, with one offer being a dedicated youth coach who works with them to increase their self-esteem and confidence.
Callum (name has been changed), 13, from West Sussex, was referred to REBOOT after being identified as having several risk factors, which included smoking and buying cannabis, exclusions from school and ‘hanging out’ with a negative peer group known to be causing anti-social behaviour (ASB).
After engaging with his local Police Community Support Officer, he has been able to access kickboxing and is working with a youth coach. He also hopes to join a local youth club once lockdown restrictions loosen. Since receiving support he has not been identified as getting involved in any further criminal behaviour.
Success stories like the above are not unusual, as REBOOT continues to invest in the young people of Sussex who may just need some early guidance to get on the right path.
Sussex PCC Katy Bourne comments: “The reality is that some young people are vulnerable to exploitation. I am committed to safeguarding them and giving them opportunities they otherwise wouldn’t have. The REBOOT approach is clearly working. Not only does it empower young people to make better decisions but it also educates them on the consequences of their actions.”
She added: “I want to take this opportunity to also thank Neighbourhood Watch volunteers for continuing to help us raise awareness of programmes like this and for being the eyes and ears in our communities, working with the police to keep us safe.”
To find out more about the REBOOT programme visit the PCC’s website here: https://www.sussex-pcc.gov.uk/get-involved/reboot/
Lots of content will be shared throughout the week (21-26 September) so keep an eye out on social media and make sure you are following @RebootSussex.