NEW animated videos have been produced to raise awareness about sexual assault and how to seek help following an incident.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, John Dwyer worked alongside members of the Cheshire Youth Commission to design and produce a series of animations which are now live.
The commissioner held a meeting earlier this year with young people who represented the Youth Commission and was shocked to hear the prevalence of these problems, especially among young people.
Young people were asked to provide ideas on how the Commissioner could help raise awareness of the issue and provide people with the information they need to seek help and report incidents,
Thus, the group has endeavored to develop a series of activities aimed at educating and informing young people while helping them to recognize inappropriate behavior.
Mr Dwyer, Cheshire Police and Crime Commissioner, said: ‘While initially I was shocked at the prevalence of this problem, I could quickly see how passionate young people were about it. making a difference and taking action. They came up with all the ideas from start to finish and I am very happy with the entertainment.
“I hope that the animations will be widely used and that those who are sadly victims of sexual assault will feel able to seek the support they need when it is convenient for them. I encourage anyone who has been a victim to talk to someone, even if they are just a friend, so that they can help.
The commissioner had previously been made aware of similar issues affecting young people in Chester, including the perception that sexual violence was occurring in areas with high student populations. As a result, an offer has been submitted for government funding from the Safer Streets Fund to support work to address the issues that have been raised. The outcome of this application is not yet known but it is hoped that it will build on the excellent work currently underway through a wide variety of organizations.
The Commissioner recently attended the University of Chester welcome event where he spoke directly to young people and showed the animations to new students to get their point of view. The animations were hosted by students who liked the idea that they were made for young people, by young people.
Mr Dwyer added: “I was delighted to attend the welcome event in Chester where I was able to speak with young people about this and other policing issues that interest them. Events like this always provide a great opportunity to provide people with the knowledge and information they may need. “
Ali Roberts of Leaders Unlocked said: “It is very important that all members of the Youth Commission feel they have a voice and represent others from all over Cheshire. The issue of consent and appropriate behavior is something that we come across year after year when we consult with young people.
“On behalf of the members of the commission, I want to thank John Dwyer for his continued support and it’s great to see him listen to young people and take such positive action with them and value their ideas.
The Youth Commission continues to give young people the opportunity to support, challenge and inform the work of the Police and Crime Commissioner and the Cheshire Police.
More information about the Youth Commission can be found at: www.cheshire-pcc.gov.uk/get-involved/youth-commission
You can watch the animations at www.youtube.com/cheshirepcc