|We all know that sport can bring people together. Just look at how the country united behind England’s football team at the World Cup in Russia earlier this summer. With this in mind, Avon and Somerset Police are using sport to engage with our communities through a number of initiatives running this summer which they hope will make them more visible and connected to local communities.
Last week, Avon and Somerset Police helped to organise a women’s basketball tournament, with police officers playing teams from different community groups at the Docklands Centre in St Pauls.
Officers from the local neighbourhood and response teams based at Trinity Road, with special guest player Assistant Chief Constable Caroline Peters, played matches against Bristol Refugee Women, Docklands Basketball Team and Women for Heroes.
PCSO Mohammed Berber who helped to organise the tournament said: “Sport is a great way to break down barriers and bring people together. We wanted to provide a safe and fun environment for women and girls from some of our Muslim communities to come together and take part in something, alongside their local police officers.
“It’s not always easy for us to connect with this section of the community. Language and cultural barriers can mean that we don’t tap into a whole wealth of knowledge, experience and potential support.
“We want everyone who lives in Bristol to feel that we in the police are here for them. We also need our workforce to be more representative of the communities we serve and this event was a great way to build relationships.
“If any of the women or girls who took part in the tournament came away considering that working with us, either professionally or as a volunteer, is a realistic prospect, then we will all be the stronger for it.”
PC Rose Osborne who played in the police team said: “The tournament was great fun, but we have a lot of practice to do if we are to have any realistic option of beating Docklands, who were the tournament winners.
“We were very much beaten – we only actually won one of our games. Assistant Chief Constable Caroline Peters turned out to be a great asset for us – I had no idea she was so good at basketball! We will be practising and are already looking forward to the next event.”
Avon and Somerset Police are currently recruiting for new Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) to work in the heart of our communities. If you are interested and want to learn more about the role and its requirements, please contact the Inclusion and Diversity Team on: Representative.Workforce@
They are particularly interested in hearing from under-represented groups. For more information on this role you can visit their website
Or click here for information on all our vacancies and volunteering opportunities.