High school students ACT to prevent crime

| 12/07/2016
CNS Local LIfe

John Gray High School students listen to presenters during crime-prevention day

(CNS): More than 200 John Gray High School Year 10 students saw firsthand the consequences of making bad life choices during a Youth Crime Prevention Day held Tuesday, 28 June. Instead of going to their regular classes, the students went to the Family Life Centre to attend workshops on the causes and consequences of crime, and how to make positive decisions. More than 160 Clifton Hunter High School students took part in a similar event four days earlier.

During six 45-minute sessions, the young people were exposed to a variety of topics presented by experts, testimonials by recovered drug addicts and other presentations from the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service (RCIPS), Family Resource Centre (FRC) and HM Cayman Islands Prison Service.

Designed to increase awareness among young people and reinforce their ability to make positive life-choices, the workshops included such subjects as burglary, theft, robbery and carrying offensive or prohibited weapons. Discussions also touched on the negative effects of drug and alcohol abuse, as well as bullying.

In a seminar called “Let’s Talk”, students discussed the findings of the Report on the Youth Health and Sexuality Survey conducted by the Pan American Health Organisation in 2013. The report highlighted the challenges children may encounter as they manoeuvre from adolescents to young persons, such as teenage pregnancy, gangs, entitlement, disruptions in access to education, and lack of respect for adults and authority.

The Youth Anti-Crime Trust (Youth ACT) organised the event in collaboration with the government ministries responsible for education, community affairs and home affairs, supported by volunteers from the Prison Service, the RCIPS, Department of Education Services, the FRC and the Hope For Today Foundation.

Members of the Youth ACT board include a representative from the Ministry of Education, Department of Education, Prison Service and people representing a cross-section of the Cayman Islands community.

Youth ACT chairperson Bonnie Anglin said, “I hope that, by educating students on the causes, consequences and penalties of crime, they receive empowering information on crime awareness and prevention. This will enable them to make positive decisions in their life choices.”

With the successful implementation for Years 8 and 10, Anglin said, “Youth ACT now plans to introduce the programme to Years 5 and 6 in the primary schools in coming school years.”

The crime-prevention day has been held since 2013, involving more than 2,000 Year 8 students from public high schools on Grand Cayman, as well as all grade levels from Cayman Brac’s Layman Scott Senior High School.

The Cayman Islands National Security Council recommended the programme to address anti-social behaviour and reduce the causes of crime among youth.

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Category: High School, Schools

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