AS vandals and thieves continue to target Orange Hockey Centre and fields, Hockey NSW members have devised a unique way to tackle the problem head on.
Hockey NSW regional coaching co-ordinator Kate Pulbrook says the smashing of a window and the theft of two handbags from the Hockey centre on Monday night has only strengthened her resolve to reduce crime in the area.
“It’s really annoying and frustrating that this keeps happening,” Mrs Pulbrook said.
Mrs Pulbrook said she plans to work with members of the Glenroi and Bowen communities to encourage them to use the hockey facilities for their enjoyment rather than as a place to vandalise.
“We’re focusing on the next generation and hope that when they get into their teen years and early adult life we will have already set up a relationship with them so that if anyone does talk about vandalising the area they say no don’t do that, they’re good people doing good things,” she said.
“Vandalism is costing the members a lot of money, we think if we put a bit of time and effort back into the community it might help reduce vandalism.
“This is not a short-term plan, it’s going to be a long process.”
As part of the strategy to reduce vandalism by engaging with the community, Mrs Pulbrook has already held a session at Bowen where a group of around 25 children were taught some basic hockey skills.
She also plans to run another session in Glenroi in October.
There are also plans to paint an indigenous mural on the dug-outs near the hockey fields.