SERGEANT Brad Karafil attributes his commitment to community engagement to 18 years as a country officer.
It was his accessible approach to policing that won him a place on the WA Police Excellence Awards shortlist.
An Armadale community group and Burrendah Primary School nominated Sgt Karafil after he earned acclaim within the community for initiating discussions with children across all age groups.
Burrendah Primary School principal Jayne Ebsworthy said she nominated Sgt Karafil to thank him for going beyond his duties.
“He makes a difference in the school,” Mrs Ebsworthy said.
“He formed a close, positive relationship so children can learn the role of police and he has connected with families as well.”
In the 18-months Sgt Karafil has worked with the school, he has led discussions from road safety to cyber safety.
He said it was important to engage with the students to humanise police and to help guide them to make good decisions.
“There used to be school-based police but now that’s not there anymore and students think police are only around if someone is in trouble,” he said.
Sgt Karafil said engagement with students, teachers and parents had positive results on the community and shifting perception.
The humble Sergeant said he was surprised about making the shortlist and committed to continue engagement programs.
The winners will be announced on December 10.