Big White’s Community Policing Office is getting ready to celebrate its 20-year anniversary.
The facility opened its doors on March 15, 2000, in Whitefoot Lodge, and it is open every day between 1 and 4 p.m. Wayne Lyseng and his wife, Donna, have been volunteering at the office since the beginning, and they love the work they do for the Big White community.
“Since more people are now living permanently at Big White, we are getting more local volunteers involved, and they are encouraging more newcomers to get involved,” Wayne Lyseng said in a press release. “When we first started the office most of our volunteers were winter residents only. This is a very positive change.”
The office’s primary duty is to provide free engraving for ski equipment, which helps crime prevention. Equipment theft has gone down in recent years, according to Lyseng, but he said “thefts, particularly in bars, are still too high.”
The office currently has 26 volunteers, but it has had more than 100 people from all over the world, including Australia, the U.S. and England, offer their time in the facility.
The Big White Community Policing Office files theft reports with the RCMP and fields other non-emergency crime-related calls. The office also acts as a space for RCMP personnel to use as required for their duties.
“We love to be busy,” volunteer Heather Shilton said. “The positive aspect of that is for lots of people to bring their equipment to the office to be engraved.”
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