TRAFFIC policeman Adam Elliot is travelling to Ethiopia next month to help a street children project.
Having worked hard to raise money for the trip in support of the charity Retrak, PC Elliot will pack his bag and use his annual leave for the cause.
He knows what to expect having worked with Retrak Ethiopia in 2010.
“I was shocked,” he said. “I had expected there to be pockets of children sleeping rough here and there, but when we drove around the city at night they were everywhere – all along the pavements, in every shop doorway, even on the central reservations of fast thoroughfares.
“These kids are in constant danger of abuse and accidents. They just have no childhood.”
The team of 20 GMP officers includes Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy.
PC Elliot, who is based at GMP’s traffic unit in Leigh, explained: “We will work with the street children who are in the Retrak centres – just letting them be kids.
“We will organise sports and activities and also help train the local staff to deal with child abuse victims.
“A group of police officers helping street kids sends a powerful message.
“The children get very different treatment from their local police.
“Working with these children and Retrak changes your attitude to your work back here. You can’t be the same again.”
You can meet PC Elliot when he opens a fundraising Retrak clothes swap evening at the Derby Room, Leigh Library next Wednesday, from 7pm to 9pm.
Entry is £5 which will go to Retrak.
Guests can bring a few good items of clothes and accessories to swap.
For more details, call Jean Richardson on 07963 122692.