(L-R): Robert Lee, PCC Alan Charles and Phil Wood (Robert and Phil are from the St Christopher's Trust in Glossop)
Derbyshire Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Charles has been to see how his funding has turned around lives of vulnerable people with learning difficulties and increased their safety.
Mr Charles and Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Hardyal Dhindsa were special guests at the MacIntyre event to find out how the charity’s Keeping People Safe programme had enhanced the lives of those with learning difficulties.
The Safe Place project, which is run by Derbyshire Police and Derbyshire County Council, and supported by MacIntyre, delivers workshop training courses to retail outlets and public venues across the county to help them understand and protect people with learning difficulties who require assistance.
These designated “Safe Places” which include cafes, volunteer centres, bakeries boutiques and estate agents help to reassure people with learning difficulties they will be supported at the venue.
During today’s event, held at the Proact Stadium in Chesterfield, guests were shown a movie on the charity’s work during 2015 as well as presentations from coordinator Alison Wright, Emma Killick, a MacIntyre director, and project leaders.
Commenting on the visit, Mr Charles said: “I’m very impressed by MacIntyre’s work to increase the confidence of people with learning disabilities and encourage them to lead active social lives, secure in the knowledge that if they are worried they can go to a Safe Place where staff will know how to help or safeguard them.
“Evidence shows this vulnerable group are at higher risk of becoming a victim of crime which naturally increases fear among these individuals and their families. I’m pleased to help fund a service which proactively improves their safety but also motivates people to lead more fulfilling lives.”
Alison Wright, Training and Development Coordinator for MacIntyre Reps on Board project commented, "The PCC grant has enabled us to work with many people with a learning disability who have helped us to identify, seek and train almost 30 new Safe Places across Derbyshire.
“We have worked together with Derbyshire County Council for over eight years on various projects which have improved the lives of people with a learning disability. It's a great example of a true partnership, working together to achieve positive change."
MacIntyre is a national charity which supports more than 140 people with a learning disability in Derbyshire alone.
The charity delivers workshops for service users in a range of areas including keeping safe when walking, how to handle bogus callers, how to obtain help and the law, as well as training public service providers.
Its Keeping People Safe programme is a partnership initiative overseen by the Hate Crime and Staying Safe Project Steering Group which comprises key stakeholders including service users, the county council, Derbyshire Police and MacIntyre staff.
Media Enquiries: Sallie Blair - 01283 821012 / 07702 541401
Posted on Monday 23rd November 2015