Second annual Cops for Kids starts up today
© Thomas Becker - Amherst News
Const. Tom Wood discusses water saftey with Jeffery Hankey during the first day of the Cops for Kids program.
AMHERST – Police are here to serve and protect the public, but as authoritative figures there is an unwarranted fear, especially by young children.
To allay that fear, the Amherst Police Department is holding Cops for Kids from Aug. 12 to 16. The program operates as a mini police academy for ages eight to 11, focused on the role of police in the community.
The program, now in its second season was co-ordinated by Const. Jason Galloway, which he adopted during his time in Miramichi.
“I wanted to build bridges between the local Amherst Police Department and the youth,” Galloway said.
As a youth, Galloway always dreamed about becoming a police officer.
“Every kid grows up playing ‘cops and robbers,’” he said.
Galloway wanted to give kids a sense of what it’s like to be an officer, he thought it would be neat to give them the opportunity to participate in a mini police academy.
“Hopefully they’ll enjoy themselves and decide later on that they want to be police officers or at the very least, they see us as friends in the community, we’re not just authority figures.”
The 40 participants were divided into two groups – the red platoon and the blue platoon. Once they were “sworn in,” this morning, the groups toured the fire hall, EHS, the courthouse, the police department and Town Hall. They then travelled to the YMCA to learn about water safety.
“We try to incorporate any of the fun things they do and add some aspect of learning to it,” Galloway said.