This year for Black History Month we are exploring the vital role Black Women have played in shaping history and celebrating their accomplishments through sharing their stories.
Chief Constable Jeremy Vaughan said:
“October is Black History Month, and it is an important opportunity to reflect on the accomplishments – and experiences – of Black people. This year the theme is ‘Saluting our Sisters’, and throughout the month we will be showcasing some of the vital roles Black women have played, and the significant contribution they have made, and continue to make, to South Wales Police and our communities.
“South Wales Police is committed to attracting, recruiting, and supporting talented individuals who represent the diversity of South Wales. I encourage anyone from under-represented groups to engage with our recruitment opportunities through our dedicated Positive Action team.
“We've done a lot of work and come a long way but I recognise we still have more to do to ensure we truly reflect the communities we serve.”
Grace joined South Wales Police (SWP) six years ago and is currently an Incident Risk and Resolution Officer (IRRO) in the Joint Public Service Centre (PSC). She said:
“I was born and grew up in Kenya in East Africa and have been living in South Wales for over ten years. I speak three languages, Kiswahili, English and my mother tongue, Kikuyu. I also speak conversational French and currently I am learning Welsh.
“My role involves receiving reports from the public and assessing them using the SWP decision model. Once the assessment is complete, the person reporting the problem is advised on how SWP will progress their report. Additionally, I also manage the force’s radio channels.
Grace joined SWP as call handler and after two years in the role began training to become a dispatcher.
“As with most people, I like a good murder mystery and grew up watching a lot of detective shows. However, I did not think joining the police was for me. Joining SWP was a result of a happy coincidence.
“The SWP recruitment team attended an organisation where I volunteered, and staff passed my details to them (and forgot to tell me!). I later received an e-mail about PSC vacancies and the job description for the IRRO appealed to me best.
“I had my preconceptions about the skills, type of person and experience required for the role and if I would be a good fit, but I went for it anyway. Looking back, I’m glad I didn’t let my doubts get the better of me.
“I have gained a lot of knowledge, not just about policing, but about other partner agencies as well. I have made new friends, learned new skills, and more importantly, I still enjoy my job.
“I also get to work with a great team of people, most of whom I probably would never have had the chance to interact with were it not for the job. You get to do a lot of good and work with some amazing people. To anyone thinking of joining I would say just go for it.
“When I’m not working, I like to garden. My current project is keeping my avocados, two kiwi fruits and pomegranates alive long enough to get some fruit.”