This week Rowland Smith guided his 400th tour of West Midlands Fire Service’s Safeside centre in Birmingham. He has delivered key safety messages to around 2,400 children during the 6 years he has volunteered at the centre.
Here you can see Rowland pictured with his certificate in his favorite scenario, the kitchen! “I look forward to coming to Safeside,” said Rowland, Safeside Volunteer Visitor Guide. “It is very rewarding knowing that the children have learned something about safety.”
Janet Wilson, Volunteer Manager said: “Not only has Rowland conducted 400 tours to children from across the West Midlands but he is also one of our longest serving leader and mentor guides, training numerous volunteers in the art of delivering the Junior Citizen programme. In addition Rowland has become infamous on the dance floor at our annual Christmas party and can be relied upon to give a brilliant display of rocking and rolling.”
Safeside at Eastside is a scenario-based experimental learning centre, designed to encourage visitors to think and act safely. It is complemented by a smaller centre, Safeside at Handsworth. The flagship indoor ‘village’ includes a realistic, life-sized street scene, complete with pedestrian crossing, car and double-decker bus, a house, shop, pub, police station and building society. Visitors also encounter a full-sized train carriage and rail track, and water-based scenarios.
Safeside’s programmes play a key role in the prevention and education services provided by West Midlands Fire Service, all designed to make the West Midlands safer. The majority of visitors are primary school Key Stage 2 pupils, but secondary students and others with special educational needs, plus young adults and parents of younger children are also among the target groups.
Volunteer Visitor Guides are a critical part of the Safeside Team and are essential to the delivery of the key messages on the Junior Citizen Programme. Find out more about volunteering at Safeside: https://www.safeside.org.uk/volunteer.