Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service YES!
Five year 9 students have been attending Kingsway Fire Station once a week to take part in the Youth Engagement Scheme, known as YES!
YES! courses are targeted at young people aged between 12 and 16 years old who may have low self-esteem, be at risk of exclusion or disengaged with education, or they may be young carers.
Run by Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service, the 10-week course is designed to help reduce anti-social behaviour, improve school attendance levels, boost confidence, develop an understanding and appreciation for their communities and encourage aspirations for a more positive future.
Ashley said: “I enjoyed the activity where you were blindfolded so that it was like you were in a smoke-filled room. You had to swipe your foot in front of you to check whether there was anything you might bump into and stamp your foot to see if the floor would hold you. I really feel like I have learned a lot and I also think I would be able to stay calm if I ever came across a fire because I’d know what to do.”
At the end of the scheme a Pass Out ceremony was held where students were able to invite friends and family and demonstrate the teamwork and firefighting skills they have learnt and practiced over the previous weeks.
Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service, Area Manager Philip Mitchell said: “Over the last ten years the Service has delivered over 51 YES schemes, working with over 700 young people to support their personal and social development. “Our instructors work closely with participants, building their confidence and giving them life skills that will increase their chances of securing employment or future training, or where necessary, increasing their chances of returning to education. I hope these new skills will stay with them forever, and set them all up for a positive future.”