2020 Course Residential

February 23 2020

For the first time two 999 Academy programmes joined together to deliver the residential experience for students and leaders.

The residential is an essential part of the syllabus and occurs within a few weeks from the start of a new programme. It gives a protected space for students to get to know each other and to be immersed in activities which aim to challenge personal skills and team working abilities.

Bridgwater 999 Academy and Barnstaple 999 Academy both launched in January 2020 for 18 month programmes. A total of 44 students attended the residential which took place during February half term in Brixham, Devon.

During the week, the team visited Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service station’s in Exeter and their headquarters. Students were warmly greeted by Lee Howell, DSFRS CFO and Chair of the Fire Authority, Councillor Sara Randall Johnson who both described the importance of the programme and the opportunities it offers.

Students experience a staged missing person search through woodland after they had studied why people go missing, profiling and the theory of search. The NCA reports a person goes missing every 90 seconds in the UK, of which 1 in 200 children and 1 in 500 adults goes missing every year.

The Devon & Cornwall Police headquarters was an opportunity to see the dog unit, the communications centre and the firearms unit. PC Rosie Swan hosted the visit and shared an insight to the everyday operations of the service and some specialist roles.

All students achieved a mental health first aid certificate organised by the South Western Ambulance Service and delivered by Jill Stringer, MHFA England. The demands of everyday life and working in pressurised environments all contribute to the need for mental health wellbeing, the first step is equip people with the skills they need to support their own and others’ wellbeing.

Students cooked for each other all week and ended the week with a raft building challenge which they paddled around the harbour!

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