A trophy and cash prize will be presented to the youth who is able to answer the most questions about the history of the Police Force Band at the end of this year’s summer programme.
That is the promise made by retired inspector and band master, Bernard Hayes to the participants of the 2022 programme, which was officially launched yesterday under the theme “Feeding the positives, starving the negatives”.
Haynes, who was delivering the feature address at the Old Montrose Police Station, gave participants an overview of the band’s history and how it has grown over the years. But he also encouraged youths to make the most of the youth development programme.
The retired bandmaster described music as a language, with the capabilities of expressing feelings and ideas. He also noted that it sometimes has healing powers and the ability to develop one’s mind in many ways.
Haynes further encouraged participants to take their lessons seriously as there are many career opportunities in the field of music.
This is the first time since 2019 that the programme is being held, having been disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic.
About 75 participants will engage in theoretical and practical aspects of music, which will involve several musical instruments including the clarinet, drum set, trombone, rhythm guitar, bass guitar, keyboard and steel pan.
Inspector Vaughn Miller, current band master of the Police Band said this programme not only allows youths to learn how to play an instrument but provides a meaningful way to occupy their time during the summer vacation.
Sessions will be held on other topics like bullying, self esteem, assertiveness and effects of drug abuse.
It is also expected that youths will also engage in recreational outings.
Miller encouraged this year’s participants to make full use of the opportunity and to apply the “three Ps” — Pay attention, be Patient and Practice.
The bandmaster further assured parents that their children will be well cared for when they attend the programme.
Commissioner of Police Colin John also encouraged participants to engage fully in this year’s summer programme.
“Listen to instructors. Listening is the first part of learning, and if you are there speaking while instructors are trying to impart knowledge to you, it is very likely that you will miss some vital information and you will not be able to perform as best as you can,” he said.
John also took the opportunity to discourage youths from negative behaviour that involves being disobedient to their parents and stealing, and instead be respectful to adults and the property of others.
The five-week Police Band summer programme is in its 14th year of existence and will end on August 19.
The police force band was first established in 1951 and it is the second largest band in Windward Islands. The police band was an answer to the demand for police officers to obtain discipline and structure in the police force. Since its’ inception the police band went from an all-male band to be inclusive of females.