Children in Upper Beeding have been made lifelong members of Neighbourhood Watch after completing a six-week course covering home safety and security.
The after-school club at Upper Beeding Primary School was part of the Horsham District Junior Neighbourhood Watch scheme, supported by Upper Beeding Parish Council.
Sessions run by volunteers included a visit to the magistrates’ court and a film explaining how to respond to community emergencies.
Tony George, co-ordinator, said: “An actual magistrate conducting a mock trial with role playing – a very enjoyable session for all concerned.
“For another session, a West Sussex resilience and emergency service adviser came to show film clips to demonstrate how householders can be prepared to respond safely and effectively to community emergencies such as floods and severe weather conditions.
“Completion of this resilience session qualifies as the first stage of the Duke of Cornwall’s Home Safety Award, with further stages to be completed at secondary school.
“The six sessions of the course combine to show young people that they can make their own contribution to community issues, and help to ensure home and neighbourhood safety and security.”
The certificates were presented by Upper Beeding Parish Council chairman Simon Birnstingl, accompanied by parish councillor Pauline Kentell, who is also the NHW area co-ordinator for Upper Beeding.
PC Mike Harvey represented Sussex Police and the village’s two Neighbourhood Wardens were also at the ceremony, along with a good number of parents and relatives to witness the presentation of framed award certificates to the course participants.
Tony added: “The Upper Beeding junior citizens were told that they were now members of Neighbourhood Watch for life and were reminded to be sure to pass on to parents, grandparents and friends all that they had learned in their course to demonstrate the very close and positive co-operation that NHW enjoys within West Sussex.”