Gibraltar Street Pastors on the move

The Street Pastors initiative was launched in the London in 2003 as a partnership between the church, the local authority and the police. The main aim of the Street Pastors is to enable Christians to engage with people, wherever they may be at night, be it on the streets, in the pubs or clubs.

Street Pastors have been very successful in the UK and have contributed to a significant decline in night crime figures in the areas in which they operate, says the Methodist Church.

They add: The Street Pastors in the UK is supported by the Home Office. There are currently 250 Street Pastors initiatives in the UK involving 9,000 trained volunteers.

The Street Pastors in Gibraltar was launched last October, at a reception in the City Hall. There are currently three local churches involved in the scheme, in partnership with the Gibraltar Government and the Royal Gibraltar Police. The churches currently involved in Street Pastors are Gibraltar Methodist Church, Living Waters Church and City Line Church. Christians from other churches are welcome to be part of the team.

All volunteers require a reference from their Priest, Minister or Pastor, and a clean Police vetting, in order to be considered for training. The volunteers have now been training since 14th January and have covered such subjects, as Listening Skills, Safeguarding Children and Vulnerable Adults, Mental Health, First Aid, Drug Awareness, Children & Probation Services and Community Policing, as well as Youth Culture and Roles & Responsibilities.

"We would like to thank all the many people who have helped in the training, those from Government Departments and private individuals alike, for their time and dedication. The end of the first series of training will be marked by a commissioning service which will take place at the Gibraltar Methodist Church, 297 Main Street, on Friday 30th March at 8:00pm. Local dignitaries have been invited, among them members of the Government and Opposition and representatives of the Royal Gibraltar Police and other Agencies. The Rev Les Isaac, founder of the Street Pastors, will be in Gibraltar for the occasion. The Street Pastors will then be going out on the streets later that night to start their engagement with the public," said a statement.