A support team to help those affected by anti-social behaviour has been established in South Tyneside.
South Tyneside Council in partnership with South Tyneside Homes have recruited a group of five volunteers to provide support to victims across the Borough.
The Mayor of South Tyneside, Councillor Richard Porthouse, presented the volunteers with certificates to celebrate the completion of their initial training. The training equipped the volunteers with the essential skills needed to support victims affected by anti-social behaviour.
South Tyneside’s ASB victim support volunteering project is being supported by funding from Northumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) Vera Baird. The project is part of her regional initiative which aims to offer advice and guidance to those affected by this type of offence.
The Mayor said: “It was a pleasure to meet the Borough’s new volunteers and to help celebrate their first steps to becoming fully trained.
“The volunteers who have joined the project will provide a vital service to people affected by anti-social behaviour. They will provide ongoing emotional support and practical help and will be a point of contact for victims.
“On behalf of the Borough I would like to thank all of the volunteers for agreeing to give up their time to support those affected by anti-social behaviour in South Tyneside.”
The volunteers will help victims to cope and recover following an incident or sustained attacks as well as improve community confidence.
Councillor Tracey Dixon, Lead Member for Area Management and Community Safety said: “Anti-social behaviour not only has a detrimental impact on communities, it can be extremely distressing for the individuals affected, impacting on their health and wellbeing. It is something we are determined to tackle.
“We hope the emotional and practical support that our volunteers will provide to victims and witnesses of anti-social behaviour will empower residents to report this type of activity so action can be taken to prevent further incidents in their area.
“We are committed to working with our partners including Victim Support, South Tyneside Homes and the PCC Vera Baird to make sure this scheme has a positive impact across the Borough.
Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Vera Baird, said: “Anti-social behaviour can affect anyone at any time and I am very grateful to all the volunteers and everyone involved in helping me tackle this issue head on and making a difference to the lives of victims. Protecting people from harm and helping victims are top priorities for me so I wish this project in South Tyneside every success.”