BLUE Light Discos, movie nights and fishing trips are some of the many activities being planned for young people in the area, with Bulahdelah’s Senior Constable Ashley Ray the driving force behind the program.
“I thought that it would be a great idea to work with the youths under the umbrella of the Blue Light Disco to organise fun events for them,” Ashley said.
“It’s an opportunity for the police to work with the community to engage with our youth, put them on the right path, and bridge any barriers.”
Ashley, along with Senior Constables Trevor Mcleod and Dave Feeney, have been working with a community committee to get the program up and running.
With the final stages of preparation underway, the group are hoping to kick-off with a community barbecue towards the end of April, funded by the Blue Light organisation.
“We’ll be holding a sausage sizzle with free snags and music in Wade Park, and we’re organising to bring up some computer game buses from Raymond Terrace for the day,” Ashley said.
Other plans include an impressive range of activities which will “definitely keep them off the street and give them something to do”.
“We’re looking at holding a disco twice a year, and in the other months we’ll have movie nights, game nights and fishing outings,” Ashley said.
“We’re also going to work on the logistics of attending an NRL game in Newcastle and we are hoping to have some camping sessions as well.”
All young people from Bungwahl to Hawks Nest, Coolongolook to Markwell and everywhere in between, will be invited to join the fun.
“If we can get in and build a repertoire with the youth now, it may change their behaviour later on,” Ashley said.
The program has already had “immense support” from the local community, and with more people involved, “the bigger and better it can be”.
Anyone willing to assist can contact Ashley, Dave or Trevor at Bulahdelah Police Station.
All volunteers require a Working With Children check.
“All of us at the station are very excited about the program, and we can’t wait to show the community what we can do,” Ashley told News Of The Area.
By Daniel SAHYOUN