Around 100 Hertfordshire Girl Guides aged from five to 14 became the first in the county to earn the Girlguiding Policing Challenge Badge recently.
Catherine Roper, a long-serving Guide Leader for Girlguiding in Berkhamsted and the National Police Chief Council lead for Children and Young People was joined by Hertfordshire police officers and staff with Rainbows, Brownies and Girl Guides at Thomas Corum School in Berkhamsted on Sunday 26 February.
Together, they spent an afternoon undertaking a series of activities including a crime solving exercise; how to keep themselves safe; and understanding the vehicles and equipment used by frontline policing teams, including a drone demonstration from the Rural Operational Support Team.
Catherine Roper, who is now Chief Constable of Wiltshire Police, said: “I worked with Girlguiding UK to develop and launch the Girlguiding Policing Challenge Badge in London and the South-East in 2019 and have been encouraging the launch in other parts of the UK since. From a personal perspective I was so pleased to launch the badge in Hertfordshire, where I’ve been a Guide Leader for some years.
“The launch coincided with Girlguiding Thinking Day, which is a special day for Girlguiding as we reflect that we are part of a global community and learn about how we can make our world a better place. The Girlguiding Police Challenge Badge offered an ideal opportunity to get the local Guiding units of all ages to think about the values of policing and public service.
“I would like to congratulate Hertfordshire Constabulary for launching the Girlguiding Policing badge and thank them for being part of such a special day for Berkhamsted District. The girls had a brilliant time. We want to see more young women joining the police service and I think earning the Police Challenge Badge is a great step to help us in promoting policing careers to girls and young women.”
Hertfordshire Chief Superintendent Nick Caveney was there with his seven-year-old daughter, who joined the Police Challenge. “Feedback from the day was great, my daughter learned about what the police do, had some fun with pieces of equipment and spoke to lots of officers. For Dacorum Safer Neighbourhood Team and our Rural Operational Support Team it was a great opportunity to give something back to the local community and to demonstrate what policing should be doing to build public confidence,” he said.
“Given policing’s need to build trust and confidence, events like this are critical to allowing young people, particularly girls, to see a friendly face of policing, and have a good dollop of fun. Hertfordshire Constabulary invests strongly in local neighbourhood policing, holds its officers to the highest standards and is committed to working with Girlguiding in Hertfordshire.”