Kent Police launch Youth Phone App

A new mobile phone application, designed to help young people stay safe while out and about is being launched.

Young people from the Kent and Medway Youth Safety Forum designed the app, called Y'z Up with the help of Kent Police, to provide advice and information about how to stay safe.

The Forum comprises young people of secondary school age who regularly meet to discuss ideas about what they can do for other young people in Kent.

The project has received funding from Kent County Council's Youth Opportunities Fund and The Robert Napier School which provided funding for licenses.

The app is free to download and available for Androids and Apple phones and tablets. It contains information about how to keep safe when out, facts and figures about drugs and alcohol as well as games.

All content is checked and verified by the groups' mentors and Kent Police officers.

Police Constable Godfrey Pain is the county's Safer Schools Partnership Co-ordinator and he has been working with the group on their idea since March last year. He said: "This is part of our ongoing programme focusing on providing information for young people about how to stay safe.

"The first thing they think about when they go out is have they got their phone, so having this information at the touch of a button will make it easier for them to ensure they not only enjoy themselves while out but stay safe too."

Ann Barnes, Kent Police and Crime Commissioner, said: "It's fantastic to see young people coming together to develop their own technology, using their own ideas, to help keep people safe. I'm really keen for my new Youth Police and Crime Commissioner to be part of this on-going project. It's a joy to witness young people with such a tenacity to get things moving and to have such enthusiasm to make a difference."

Kent County Council Cabinet member for Customer and Communities Mike Hill said: "This is a really worthy project and well done to all the young people who have been involved. Personal safety is an important issue for the Kent Youth County Council and using technology they are completely familiar with, the app will help young people and their peers stay safe."

Cllr Mike O'Brien, Medway Council's Portfolio Holder for Community Safety said: "This app is a great way for young people in Medway and Kent to find out about the issues that affect them, be it drugs or alcohol, and in a fun and informative way.

"Anything we can do to help young people to keep safe has to be welcomed. The young people involved in designing this app have carried out some really good research, and I am proud they are taking a proactive approach to educating their peers about these important issues."