NT Fire & Rescue Community Engagement Officer Paul RUBIE recently teamed with Ramingining Police and Arafura CEPO to conduct multi-faceted community safety activities in the remote heart of Arnhem Land.
Senior Firefighter Paul RUBIE and Constable 1/C Paul KEIGHTLEY recently attended Milingimbi and Ramingining schools where eager students participated in the NTFRS ‘Smart Sparx’ Fire Safety sessions. Police and Fire service members also assisted school principals and staff by speaking to various students and families at school, and in community regarding making good choices, respect and ‘Speaking Up’ by contacting emergency services when the need arises.
The ongoing issue of after-hours damage and graffiti inside Milingimbi school grounds was also a main topic with students and families. Milingimbi community showed that proactive engagement is well received, as over the following Easter four day break, there were no reported damage or trespassing issues for the first time in ages at the school. Milingimbi school have also been working closely with local police from Ramingining on CPTED principals (Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design) with a new high fence, locks and planned installation of robust LED lighting.
Police also conducted many community walks with local RSAS (Yellow shirt) attendance officers, speaking to many families and students about the importance of school. Local indigenous RSAS members expressed their genuine thanks and support of Police and Fire support with their ongoing efforts to increase school attendance.
Dept of PM&C Government Engagement Coordinators (GEC’s) Erika SAFFI (Ramingining) and Anne ENCHONG, along with local elder and Indigenous Engagement Officer (IEO) Norman are also strong supporters. School attendance is up at both Milingimbi and Ramingining, with the number of children attending 100% of the time, increasing steadily at Ramingining. RSAS and police spent time at the local ALPA store speaking to management and parents also about the ‘No School, No shop’ policy and this was well received by both community and school.
NTFRS Community Engagement Officer Paul RUBIE said “the joint initiative is giving the NTFRS a greater exposure to communities across the NT”. “The CEPO Programme helps us reach out to remote locations”. “The students respond so well to our School based education programme (‘Smart Sparx’) and we hope to reduce the number of injuries caused by Fire”. “As we know Fire is a large part of living in the Top End and we need to educate the kids on staying safe around fire, knowing how to recognise a good or bad situation and the mechanisms to get assistance if required”.