Now in its 25th year, Wiltshire charity Splash has grown considerably from its humble beginning of one PC working with young people in Chippenham.
In 1995 Splash became a registered charity, governed by an independent board of trustees, and supported by Wiltshire Police.
The charity now employs five members of staff who are based at Melksham Police Station.
Around 300 vulnerable, young people a year now benefit from the free activities during school holidays - a time when young people are often drawn into trouble.
Splash projects work to increase young people’s self confidence, self esteem and social skills and reduce anti-social behaviour – improving not only their wellbeing, but the wellbeing of the communities they live in.
Referrals come through police, schools, social services and other organisations and charities working with troubled young people.
The charity is mainly self funded and with a recent grant from the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Innovation Fund, is growing its scope in area and number of young people involved.
Splash is delighted to have the support from two police officers who are raising money for the charity with two challenging physical events.
PC Stuart Welch is taking part in Ride 24 in June and will be cycling 310 miles in 24 hours and PC Geoff Goodway will be running 33 miles across Salisbury Plain in the new Imber Ultra Race on Sunday 9 March.
PC Goodway, who works in the Neighbourhood Tasking Team, said: “I am humbled to be representing Splash – it only took a short chat with the team to make me realise I wanted to get involved and help them raise much needed funds for the great work they do.”
Having never before run 33 miles, a very short training period is certainly going to prove a challenge, but he is determined to do it.
PC Welch has recently moved to a Wiltshire Neighbourhood Policing Team and found out about Splash through the police network before he arrived.
As well as the massive Ride 24 challenge in June, he is launching his event at Tescos in Trowbridge on Friday 14 March – cycling as many miles as possible in seven hours.
PC Welch said: “Fitness is a big passion of mine and I believe that giving young people the opportunity to become involved in leisure activities will help them focus and channel their outlook on life.”
You can support Splash’s work with troubled young people in Wiltshire by sponsoring: PC Welch at www.justgiving.com/StuWelch-24hours4splash or PC Goodway at www.justgiving.com/Geoff-Goodway2508
If you would like to find out more about Splash please call the team on 01380 734106. Splash are also on the lookout for volunteers so if you can spare some time to support the charity, please get in touch.
If your work involves young people, you can also refer them to Splash. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.splash-wiltshire.org.uk