AFTER a year in the job, Cheshire’s first youth ambassador says he is now ready to ‘make things better’ for young people in the town.
Dominic Rogers, aged 24, said: “It’s gone very quickly but there has been a lot to learn, and a lot of young people to speak to.
“It’s been important to know what young people are saying and what their priorities are.”
Mr Rogers believes he has met with 9000 young people since being appointed by PCC John Dwyer in 2013.
But after admitting having spent a year largely talking to youngsters, the former learning support assistant says he must now produce results.
“It’s important to get the bigger picture, I’m looking at what to do, and the next stage is getting on and doing that.
“That’s the important bit, I totally accept that. I will be judged on what I do, and the changes I can influence.
“It’s important to get things right, and there is no point in rushing.”
In Warrington, a new initiative using a dedicated police officer to work with children in care is due to be brought in, according to Mr Rogers.
It is aimed at building a relationship with police to stop vulnerable youngsters from becoming involved in crime, or reoffending.
He said officers have been identified, with the system due to be brought in by the end of September.
A project has also been started to improve relations between young people and Cheshire Police.
After a consultation with the University of Chester, police officers will be trained in what communication methods are best to use.
“Young people are often spoken down to, or talked at, by police,” said Mr Rogers.
“I want to make sure improvements made are evidenced based, to improve that communication.”
He has visited schools, youth clubs and youth offending services in Cheshire, while a video has been commissioned, working with charity Fixers, to warn of the dangers faced when a parent goes to prison.
Mr Rogers is also planning to create a website to signpost young people to services.
The youth ambassador said he would not change anything about his first 12 months in office.
He added: “I wouldn’t do anything differently.
“We are doing it properly, to make sure we are doing what young people need.”