Derbyshire offers support to young victims of crime

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More than 150 young victims of crime have accessed support from a new dedicated service set up to help them recover, it has been revealed.

Derbyshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Hardyal Dhindsa said dozens of youngsters had received help since he commissioned the Got Your Back scheme in April. A further 100 young victims of crime had been offered support under the initiative.

The project, run by voluntary organisation Remedi, was set up to offer specialist support to young people aged 17 and under to help them cope and recover from the crimes committed against them. Through its website and engagement events, the service also raises awareness on the ways young people can report crime to the police.

So far, the service has contacted 255 young people to offer support, with 159 young people accepting help. By the end of December, it is hoped 360 young people will have been contacted and offered support.

Mr Dhindsa commented: “What is most reassuring about this update is that more than 20 of these young victims have referred themselves to the scheme.

“The value in this is obvious - many young victims of crime live in fear or silence and never report their experiences to police. If we can build trust and awareness in this service, more young people will be motivated to seek out the specialist help they need and take those tentative steps to recovery before problems spiral. It will also help us to protect their safety.

“I’ve said from the outset that this service will turn away no one - even when a crime hasn’t been reported or committed. The emphasis is on listening to young people, giving them the tools they need to rebuild their lives, and signposting them to the professionals who can help if this isn’t immediately possible.”