19 January 2017
Crimestoppers, the independent crime-fighting charity, is today holding a Gloucestershire volunteer committee event to publicise the work they do within the county and appeal for new volunteers.
Using a Heart FM radio advert, social media, posters and leaflets, the charity is also looking to boost awareness of the 24/7 anonymous 0800 555 111 telephone number and online form at crimestoppers-uk.org, where people can give information about crime safely without anyone ever knowing who they are.
This event follows last year’s appointment of regional manager for Gloucestershire and Wiltshire, Emily Van der Lely, which has already led to an increase in campaign activity and crime information received.
Gloucestershire passed on 1,275 pieces of actionable information to the police in the area during the last calendar year, a 19.7% increase, and a figure that the committee will work to grow even further in their bid to tackle crime across the county.
Crimestoppers, since its inception in 1988, has passed over 1.7 million pieces of information to law enforcement agencies resulting in over £134 million stolen goods recovered and over £332 million drugs seized.
Crimestoppers works at a grassroots level across the UK helping to fight crime in local communities. Our volunteer network is integral to this, working with local law enforcement agencies, businesses and other charities to launch campaigns and events, helping to raise awareness and make communities safer places to live.
Recent research into the importance of our anonymity confirms how valuable Crimestoppers is to the people who contact us.
‘Helen’ lives in a small close with her teenage daughters on a well-known estate. She has stayed in the area because of family ties, but hates that everyone knows everyone else’s business. She has heard a lot about local crime through local news and regular Facebook updates from people she knows.
A major drug dealer lives nearby and ‘Helen’ regularly sees “smack addicts coming and going” as well as, what she believes to be, shipments of class A drugs delivered in the middle of the night.
‘Helen’ has never reported any of this to the police because “they know me. They nod at me when I walk past them. What if something happened to me kids?”
To deal with it, she has chosen to “just keep me head down and stop noticing it on purpose.” Her overall view on crime in her area is that as long as no-one’s getting seriously hurt “you should just leave it alone.”
This is where Crimestoppers can really make a difference. No-one need ever know that ‘Helen’ had come forward with information. She would never have to give a statement to police or go to court.
Tony Butler, Volunteer Chairperson for the committee, said: “Crimestoppers makes a real difference to communities. It empowers individuals to give information about criminals safely and anonymously.
“We are hoping that this event will help to promote our service and maybe encourage people to volunteer and work on local campaigns.”
Emily Van Der Lely, Regional Manager for Crimestoppers in Gloucestershire, added: “Volunteers bring energy, enthusiasm and a concern for the welfare of the local community. They also bring their own ideas and expertise which is what helps to bring about such fantastic results.
“We encourage anyone with a real interest in Crimestoppers to join us by volunteering or by becoming a Charity Ambassador, helping to spread the message that anyone with information on crime can report anonymously.”
**Anyone interested in becoming a Crimestoppers volunteer can complete the brief, online ‘Volunteer Enquiry Form’.
For further information please contact Fiona Murton-Taylor, PR & Media Officer for Crimestoppers, on 0208 835 3752/ email firstname.lastname@example.org.