Police recruit literacy course – Class trip to the police station

Police Recruit Literacy

Wellington ELP’s Police Recruit Literacy class were given a great tour of Wellington Central Police station by Sergeant Phillip Pithyou.

They were accompanied by their teacher Kathy Ombler and ELP colleague Edwin Reverol. Phil started by showing them a video on Joining the Police with the key message that policing requires intelligence and physical ability. He stressed the application process can take up to a year and that community experience/volunteering  is good as it shows a willingness to get involved, to help the community.

The Watch House which deals with issues such as public enquiries and lost property was first stop on the tour, followed by the Camera Room where volunteers watch cameras set up around the CBD. Next up was the busy Communications Centre that handles 111 calls and Crime Reporting lines for central New Zealand. The Custody Area, cells and EBA Suite made quite an impact but the grand finale was when everyone tried on Phil’s stab-proof vest. It was heavy!  Our learner Rakesh (pictured trying on the vest) gave a nice thank you mihi (speech) to Phil on behalf of us all, and to support him and confirm our thanks we sang a waiata Tutira mai. Phil said it was a ‘strong’ finish and he was very moved. Here is what our learners have to say…

“That was one of the most wonderful days in my life, thanks to you explaining police work for us. I like the volunteer jobs, the opportunities the police make for volunteers. I like the teamwork. I was surprised about the 111 call centre staff. It’s unbelievable that last year there were 1.5 million calls, this year so far 2.5 million calls. They are very clever people. Those things really impressed me and I understand now more about police work. I am keen to work with the police, only one thing we didn’t see the dog squad other than that I thoroughly enjoyed the visit.” – Ganesh

“Thanks for sharing your experience with is and encouraging us to join police work. It was very nice to be in the police station and see how hard the work was, and how your team members were working and helping each other. I was really excited to watch that teamwork. Once again I thank you for your encouragement and I wish you all the best.” Husam

“Thank you for your time and for hosting our police station visit. I realised that people are dealing with many hard things. I appreciate the way you explained everything related to the police department and made us realise the police are also friendly with people. I really got surprised about the closed circuit TVs for peoples’ safety. I am impressed with learning that there are many departments and volunteers working. I look forward to joining one of these departments in the future.” – Satya

Police recruit literacy course


  • 45-hour course (18-week course)
  • For people who want to study for a career with the NZ Police (preferably, people who have started the application process)
  • Bring your English reading and writing to the level required to join the NZ Police.
  • English level – confident speakers of English
  • Qualified teachers
  • For New Zealand citizens and residents
  • Free programme
  • In Waikato and Wellington centres
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