Camps build confidence
KUNUNURRA POLICE have recently completed two very successful ‘Back to Country’ camps for girls from the local community.
Kununurra OIC Senior Sergeant Leeca Smith said in recent years a lack of female officers in the YPO role at the station has made it difficult to provide this type of opportunity for young women, with the emphasis being on providing for boys as they make up a larger proportion of youth at-risk.
"I'm very proud of the work YPO Senior Constable Jasmine Carlin has done to rally assistance from Save the Children and Target 120 and make these camps happen," she said.
"Kimberley Joint Response Office Detective SC Cara Jellie has also been involved with this initiative and attended the second camp."
A total of eight girls attended the two camps, with each receiving a toiletry bag filled with essentials to keep.
SC Carlin said the girls quickly opened up about their everyday lives and were happy to share some of the challenges they face.
"While we set up camp, prepared food and threw a line in the water, we discussed issues such as safe sex, domestic violence, and alcohol and drug use," she said.
"The camps provided an opportunity to remove the usual pressures the girls face and we encouraged them to explore some of their aspirations."
"Engaging with the girls on a deeper level has strengthened their trust and understanding of the assistance which is available to them from police, education and other local support agencies," SC Carlin said.
"These young women were all identified as being at risk, but having the opportunity to expand both their horizons and their support networks is an important step in helping them to shape what their futures might look like."