During the summer, when Ollie started getting restless and bored, I took the initiative to write to the PSNI headquarters to see if there was any way that we could come and visit a police station. I explained in my email that Ollie had an avid interest in everything emergency services related and it was an interest that I wanted to encourage. I didn't think my email would go far but I figured that if I didn't ask......
I was surprised a few days later when I got an email saying thank you for writing and that they were passing my mail to someone in my area. I then got an email from the Constable Dunne who was the police man for our area and he said that we couldn't visit the station for a number of different reasons but that he and a colleague could call out with the police car and visit with us. Excitement!!
When they were on their way, Ollie had no idea. I didn't tell either of the boys about my plan so when a police car showed up right outside the house, with two police men stepping out of it, Ollie looked excited and confused.
While they were here they answered Ollie's questions and filled him in on this things he would need to do if he wanted to work for the PSNI one day. They told him he needed to listen to his mummy more, always listen to his teacher and try hard at school and they told him a little about the young offenders unit just up the road from here and that the boys who were there hadn't been very good. They were so good with the boys, let them try their police hats on, showed them the items they kept in their duty belt (gun, cuffs, baton, cs spray, a radio and a torch). They also brought some PSNI branded stationery for the boys (rulers, pencils and rubbers)!
When it was time for them to go, they let Ollie into the front of the car. They switched the lights on, let the siren go and then we took a photo outside the car. I can't imagine what the neighbours thought!
How awesome is that for community engagement though. I know the boys will remember the day forever.