A trainee police officer from Bognor Regis has shared her motivations for entering the force as a Home Office campaign to recruit 20,000 new officers is launched.
Aggie Kornacka is five weeks away from completing her training and hitting the streets of Bognor, where she has lived since 2006.
The mother-of-two said she had ‘always wanted to be a police officer’ for as long as she could remember.
“I’ve always helped people, my mum always said I would give my last clothes to anyone,” she said.
When she moved to the UK from Poland 15 years ago she helped out many other Polish speakers, assisting with filling out forms and even interpreting throughout the delivery of seven babies.
For the last four years, she has been volunteering on the force’s Operation Accent programme, which involves using social media to connect with the Eastern European community in the area.
Aggie said the project was launched to build up trust between the community and Sussex police after a Polish man, Marek Pudlowski, was murdered in Bognor in 2009.
The scheme involves informing people how to report crimes, after statistics showed that reports from non-English speakers were low.
Aggie said it had proven successful and is hoping to transfer the skills she picked up during this time when she becomes a police officer.
“It was really good experience, I learnt a lot while I was there,” she said.
While the station in Bognor already has two Polish-speaking officers, Aggie will be the first Polish-speaking woman in the team.
Last week, she was chosen to take part in a radio advert as part of the Home Office’s new campaign to recruit 20,000 new police officers.
When asked what advice she would give anything thinking about joining the force, Aggie had this to say.
“My biggest advice is never give up, go for it – if you want to do it, if you want to help people,” she said.
“Yes it’s a slightly high risk job but it’s very valuable.
“If you help at least one person, that’s more satisfying than anything else.
“I’m a mother-of-two, so safety in the community and safety for my kids is the most important thing.”