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Teens put through their paces during innovative police and army project

Teenagers swapped their school uniform for combat clothing as part of a joint police and army initiative to learn new skills and how to deal with tough situations.

West Midlands Police worked alongside soldiers from the Army’s 16 Signal Regiment and West Midlands Brigade to put 14 and 15-year-olds through their paces at a military camp last week.


Image courtesy of Ministry of Defence:


A group of pupils from Wolverhampton were selected to take part in the innovative five day Life Maps programme alongside others from Staffordshire.

More than 30 young people were involved in a range of army-based activities around team-building, communication and self-discipline.

This included being taught by soldiers how to build a shelter, cook with army ration packs, hide with camouflage and carry out a vehicle checkpoint. 

They also spent time sleeping under the stars, completed an assault course, and took part in drills and inspections.

Officers from West Midlands Police helped co-ordinate the programme led by an experienced military officer at Swynnerton Army Camp; finishing with a Passing Out Parade.

DC Danny Wilson, from WMP based at Perry Barr, said: "We worked with school staff to identify those who we felt would benefit from the army camp experience.

"The range of activities helped them to learn individual and team-working skills, while the regimented approach highlighted the importance of self-discipline.

"We want to help young people to raise their aspirations and get a better understanding of dealing with difficult situations; taking responsibility for their actions and making the right choices.

"It was certainly no ’holiday camp’ but the feedback we received was that the teenagers had learned a lot from the programme."

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