The hymn Amazing Grace, performed by the Defence Force Steel Orchestra, replaced the sound of honking horns along the Southern Main Road, Chaguanas yesterday, as scores of children, teens and adults held a march against crime.
Speaking with Sunday Newsday about the large turnout early on a morning, co-organiser of the march and deputy leader of the Edinburgh 500 Police Youth Club (PYC) Corporal Jacey Small said, “most people are law-abiding and want to help promote, preach love and unity across TT.”
“They wanted to be part of something positive, show others in their community that instead of doing crime and engaging in illegal activities, you could choose to join a Police Youth Club, the Scouts, the Girl Guides, the Cadets. All of which will teach you valuable skills and empower you to live a good life. This march also serves to remind the community about the different groups their children can become a part of, as we work to make our community and our country a better place.”
Small is assigned to the Central Division Community Policing Department. He organised the event with his boss and leader of the Edinburgh 500 PYC, Sgt Hazel Lucien.
Participants also included the Couva PYC, Brasso Seco PYC, the Hearts and Minds Programme in Laventille, the Scout Association, the Girl Guides, the Cadet Force and the Single Fathers Association.
Having started on the busy main road, the marchers made their way through the community of Edinburgh 500 before ending at the Edinburgh 500 Recreation Ground, corner of Edinburgh Boulevard and Hummingbird Drive.
That’s where Sunday Newsday caught up with the Scout Association’s Chaguanas District Commissioner, Kennedy Charran.
“Corporal Small contacted us last week and he told us it was an anti-crime march. Because of our scouting mandate, which is to build character in youths so that we can build better citizens, we thought it necessary for us to get involved.”
Charran added that marching with the PYC was good for the boys under his care because they got to interact with others who are also striving to “develop citizens with good character. This way, we can help to achieve positive change in our community, (thereby) helping to build a better country.” Single Fathers Association president Rhondall Feeles noted that apart from serving as an important reminder that there are groups working to uplift society, the anti-crime march was a great networking opportunity.
“People think it’s just about walking down the street to make a statement and raise awareness. That’s true but we came into contact with so many different groups here today, like the Cadets, Cubs, Scouts, Girl Guides, even fathers seeking advice on their (custody) matters. So it’s not just the community seeing that people are standing up together against crime but about (participants) getting the support they need to reach their goals,” Feeles told Sunday Newsday.
If you would like to join the Edinburgh 500 PYC, you can contact Corporal Jacey Small at 461-1211.