The Street Angels in Whitby are celebrating their fifth birthday today.
They're a group of 19 volunteers who help keep people in the town safe at night on weekends.
You can go along to their stall at Dock End between 10am and 2pm today, where they'll have cakes, cards and crafts for kids.
They're looking for more volunteers and at their stall today you can also find out more about how you could help.
Christine Koller, who's one of the Whitby Street Angels, said:
"We go out on Friday and Saturday nights from about 10 o'clock until 2am, depending on how busy it is. We deal with people who have had a bit too much to drink, we try to get them home, sometimes they just want someone to talk to. We give out flip flops, water, and we're all trained in how to do first aid.
I love doing it, we get good feedback most of the time, it's just lovely to be able to help. I really enjoy it, every night we go out it's something different, you can never predict what kind of an atmosphere it's going to be, but generally it's a nice atmosphere."
The Christian Ambulance Network has been launched to support Christians as they serve God in the ambulance service and to encourage believers that Biblical Christianity is 100% compatible with this line of work. It is open to all staff grades and roles, clinical and non-clinical, patient-facing and support staff. The Network is here to:
Support and encourage Christians in the ambulance service
Jesus Christ has placed us where we are in the ambulance service, to make a difference for him. We have each experienced some of the common pressures, challenges and even perceived conflicts for Christians in the ambulance service. We therefore want to provide a network to share, support and encourage one-another so we can be salt and light to our friends, family and colleagues. We can do some of this 'virtually' but also by providing support and accountability through local networks.
We also know what it's like not being able to meet up regularly at Church due to unsocial hours and rotating shifts. We can therefore also share some material and ideas to help one-another with accessing the Bible, teaching and prayer times.
If you work as a manager, staff member or volunteer in the ambulance services, we would love you to join us (or if you know anyone please pass the details on). You can find us on Facebook by searching for Christian Ambulance Network and ask to join, or follow us on Twitter @ChristianAmbNwk or email us at email@example.com.
Crime and antisocial behaviour on Saturday nights in Northallerton dropped by 30% in the year since the Street Angels scheme was introduced to the town.
The Street Angels are volunteers who patrol Northallerton on a Saturday night to provide reassurance and support for anyone in need of help.
The scheme was launched with funding from the Police and Crime Commissioner, Julia Mulligan, and in partnership with New Life Baptist Church, Safer Hambleton Hub, and Churches Together Northallerton, as a preventative measure to help stop situations escalating to the point where the emergency services need to intervene.
"The scheme has been a phenomenal success and is a superb example of what can be achieved through working in partnership. My thanks go to everyone involved, not least the Angels who volunteer their own time – without them it would not be possible. Alcohol consumption plays a major part in crime and antisocial behaviour, and by providing support to vulnerable people, including those suffering from the effects of drink, the Angels provide much needed help and refuge, relieving the pressure on the police service and preventing things from getting out of hand." – SERGEANT SIMON WILSON, NORTHALLERTON NEIGHBOURHOOD POLICING TEAM
Over the year the Angels have come to the aid of many people, including:
In the year prior to the launch of the Street Angels there were 43 violent crimes and five incidents of antisocial behaviour recorded on a Saturday night.
In the year from 2 July 2016 – 2 July 2017, there were 28 violent crimes and three incidents of antisocial behaviour recorded on a Saturday night.
Total crime for the same periods was 94 incidents, followed by 66 incidents the following year.
Around 70 people enjoyed the first of a series of conference events aimed to bring together CNI Network projects within different regions. The day, held at Riverside Stadium in Middlesbrough, was an opportunity for eating together, networking, celebrating the impact of local projects, hearing about the direction of CNI Network and #FaithAndPoliceTogether and up-skilling volunteers through a variety of workshops. The event was opened by Cleveland Police and Crime Commissioner Barry Coppinger. The workshops on offer included First Aid from British Red Cross, Social Media, Domestic Violence, Licensing and Terrorism Awareness and Appropriate Adult Service from MIND. A variety of exhibition stands helped local projects gather information which will help volunteers better serve local communities. The event also included give-away's, the #JesusLovesFestivals selfie board, prayer and songs from local man Peter Howe.
Organisations in York will be working together to ensure that everyone can enjoy all that the city has to offer safely and responsibly.
Recent initiatives and campaigns have seen North Yorkshire Police work closely with City of York Council, British Transport Police, city licensees and many other partners. These will continue throughout the summer, alongside new developments to make the city even safer.
Sergeant Nick Plumb, of York City Neighbourhood Policing Team, said: “We have come a very long way over the last few years, and we’re now working with other agencies and organisations more closely than ever before. Those efforts have ensure that York city centre continues to be a great place to work and visit.
“York is a very welcoming city, and the vast majority of people behave appropriately and treat each other with respect. Initiatives such as the Code of Conduct and the Had Enough campaign mean that people are aware of the standards of behaviour we expect from them. We have also been running operations involving plain-clothes officers attending premises as late as 3am, and, over several weeks, venues were seen refusing to serve drunk people and being proactive in upholding their responsibilities. These operations will continue and will be conducted when information or concerns are raised about areas.
“Rest assured that the small minority of people who cause issues will continue to be dealt with robustly, through police powers such as dispersal orders; summons and fines for street urination offences; and the use of community protection powers by City of York Council’s Neighbourhood Enforcement Officers.
“Our colleagues in British Transport Police will ensure that people behave appropriately and responsibly on board trains and at the station; and in the city centre we will patrol jointly alongside Neighbourhood Enforcement Officers, and work closely with York BID street rangers to tackle low-level anti-social behaviour during the afternoon and early evening. We will also be using the new Sentrysis system, enabling the pub trade and partners to share information with us more swiftly.
“We’re also extremely grateful for the assistance of volunteers and organisations like the University of York Students’ Union NightSafe team and the Street Angels who help people made vulnerable by alcohol get home safe. This year we’re also developing close links with the York Rescue Boat, and continuing our work with hoteliers and licencees.”
A webchat will be held at 7.30pm on Thursday 6 July 2017. Representatives from North Yorkshire Police, City of York Council, Safer York, and other partners will be in attendance, to answer residents’ questions about policing and community safety issues in the city centre.
To join, visit www.northyorkshire.police.uk/webchat on the day (or in advance, to set a reminder), or leave your questions or comments in advance on the North Yorkshire Police Facebook page.
This last weekend founder of CNI Network Paul and Jean Blakey visited several projects in the South of England. The trip started meeting Lucy Hardy from Club Angels London for lunch and catch up before a meeting with Thames Valley Police in Oxford where they spoke on Club Angels to several police and licensing officers from across the Thames Valley region.
On Friday the pair visited the new coordinator of Woking Street Angels Lucy Chester and trustee Mark Potter. Over lunch they shared news and stories from Woking and the wider CNI Network family. In the evening Paul went to Royal Ascot to join with Windsor, Maidenhead and Woking Street Angels who were Street Angel-ing as the 70,000 race goers left the event. Over the week £600 worth of flip-flops were handed out to young ladies walking barefoot and along with general help, first aid and offering directions the team of volunteers helped make a massive difference at this event. Following Royal Ascot Jean and Paul visited the Aldershot Town Centre Pastoral Team, shared news from CNI Network and then joined them at the table they set up in the town offering hot drinks, water and lollipops.
On Saturday the day started at a breakfast for Camberley Street Angels where Paul answered questions from volunteers then shared about some of the exciting work of CNI, including Royal Ascot, Big Church Day Out, America, clubs, A&E departments and new projects launching on the streets. In the evening Paul was once again at Royal Ascot, this time later on in the evening before he visited Maidenhead Street Angels. Again it was great to share news from across the CNI Network family and join the team on patrol looking at the redevelopment of the town and hearing of changes to the night-time economy.
BBC 1's Songs of Praise is to feature the work of Street Angels in Magaluf this Sunday (18th June) at 4.55pm. Please share!