BY HARNOOR GILL
Grade 11 student
Christ The King Catholic Secondary
BEING a part of the community, I am always concerned with the safety and well being of others around me. As I started volunteering, I noticed that there were organizations in communities dedicated to assisting the public in terms of general safety. A great example of an organization that helps to solve and deter crime through the means of reporting criminal activity anonymously is none other than Crime Stoppers. As an avid volunteer, I decided to become a part of the local volunteer not-for-profit at the Crime Stoppers of Halton. I received the opportunity to become a Crime Stoppers volunteer and I feel extremely privileged to volunteer for such a great cause.
As my first venture with Crime Stoppers of Halton, I have the opportunity to raise awareness on the cause of this not-for-profit at the annual event of Police Day. This event is held on the second Saturday of May each year at the Police Headquarters in Oakville. The purpose behind this event for the Halton Regional Police Service is to be able to build effective partnerships with members of the diverse and growing community of Halton Region. This is a perfect event for people of all ages and interests in order to enhance the understanding between the police and the general public. This daylong celebration of representing policing in the Halton Region offers all visitors the opportunity to learn about law enforcement on a first-hand basis with the use of interactive presentations.
This year’s Police Day was held on Saturday, May 9 and the centralized theme focused on “Community Mobilization”. It was the 14th annual Police Day of the Halton Regional Police Service and it really brought the greater community closer together with the local police. I enjoyed the K9 unit demonstration along with the Tactical Rescue Unit that was shown twice. It was great to see the community at large enjoying the services provided by the police and I think this really left a positive effect about the police force on everyone.
During the day, I also had the chance to help man the Crime Stoppers of Halton booth and visited other displays within the auditorium as well. I had fun handing out “swag” to people who came by and it included pencils, colouring books, stickers and fridge magnets designed to raise awareness about Crime Stoppers. However, I was also able to take time off to visit other displays and witness various presentations on this day. I connected and networked with other branches of the Halton Regional Police Service such as the Identity Theft Unit and Community Mobilization and Engagement Unit.
Not only were the police highlighted, but also organizations promoting community safety. An example of this is when I visited the Victim Services Unit where I learned about the charity known as SAVIS (Sexual Assault and Violence Intervention Services). I was also intrigued by the awareness that the Canadian Centre for Child Protection was raising on the issue of keeping all teens safe from online sexual exploitation. Along with the fabulous displays, it was also a beautiful day outside allowing for live bands to perform on stage and people were able to enjoy a barbecue provided by Troy’s Diner on picnic tables.
Overall, I had a great time on promoting the cause of Crime Stoppers and it was a great opportunity to let people know about this local volunteer organization that helps keep our communities safe and sound.