The West India Committee's Metropolitan Police Bursary Scheme - 2015-2017
Between the Autumn of 2015 and the Spring of 2017 the West India Committee (WIC) ran a Bursary Scheme in collaboration with the Metropolitan Police and the Garfield Weston Foundation, with the lead administrator of the programme being Charlie Wheeler, Senior Envoy at WIC.
The Bursary Scheme provided successful applicants with an initial questionnaire to complete, personal development support, advice packs and ultimately a full grant for their ‘Certificate in Knowledge of Policing’ (CKP). The CKP at the time cost between £800 and £1000, and was a prerequisite for joining the Metropolitan Police. The CKP’s cost has proved to be a financial barrier for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BME) applicants in the past, and this bursary scheme went some way in helping to address the problem. The idea is that by WIC assisting individuals (of all ethnic and cultural backgrounds) in joining the Metropolitan Police, these police officers can help engender more positive future relationships between the Metropolitan Police and the Caribbean communities (and other ethnic minority communities) in the Greater London area.
We are pleased to announce that of the six participants in the Bursary Scheme, five individuals have been confirmed as having joined the Metropolitan Police Service. Below are examples of testimonials given by the successful Bursary Scheme participants.
Adam (right picture): "I’d like to begin this testimonial to The West India Committee by stating how much The West India Committee has assisted me in pushing me to be where I am today, which would otherwise have been extremely difficult.
Being of a black and minority ethnic group does not come without its challenges, even more so when joining The Metropolitan Police as a young and new police constable in what is one of the most challenging jobs in the world. The support and kindness that The West India Committee has shown towards me is truly heart-warming, and something that I will remember for the rest of my life.
The West India Committee aided in funding the costs of my Certificate in Knowledge of Policing course, which has given me an incredible knowledge and confidence boost in myself as well as my skills in policing, prior to attending police training at Hendon Police College.
I am extremely grateful and thank The West India Committee for the support, guidance and general friendliness that they have given to and shown me, and will be forever grateful to them for giving me the kick start I needed to join one of, if not the, best job in the world."
Abdirazak: "It has been almost a year and four months since I started my career with the Metropolitan Police Service. I am thoroughly enjoying my self. I am still in my probation period until the end of September 2018. I am currently part of a response unit which react to 999 calls made by the members of the public. I have also spent approximately four months being part of the case progression unit which evaluate the evidence, charge and present cases to the crown prosecution service after someone has been arrested. The role of a police officer is a challenging one but at the same time rewarding. It is what you make of it.
I would like to thank The West India Committee for selecting to pay for my CKP course. I have had numerous conversations with people regarding your aim to improve the relationship between the West Indian community and The Police. The feed back has been positive. Many officers are aware of the cultural diversity in London and the history of policing it and are willing to improve on it.
Once again, thank you for your support."
Sunny B (picture above): "...Yes indeed today was my first day at Hendon and I have my attestation done, so I am officially a Police Officer as from today.
I would take this opportunity to thank you for the help and support and it means a lot to me, especially when I am going through financial difficulty.
...And a big thanks to West India Committee for the financial support. It was such a peace of mind knowing that there is such great support from the committee. It's not just financial but I feel like ethnic minorities like myself are not being overlooked. You guys are really doing a great job. My probation will last for two years before I can be a substantive police officer. I would be paying off my CKP course within the two years if I had not received the financial support from the committee."
Hijaz: "I am very pleased to inform you that I have passed my CKP exam and I will be commencing my training as PC on 26th of September 2016. I am very thankful for the support and trust from you and West India Committee. It won't be possible without your support.
Thanks again and keep doing the good work."
Author: Charlie Wheeler
5 February 2018