Two Auxiliary Officers have come in for high praise from a citizen whose daughter they aided during a school presentation.
Mariah Belliveau, a Grade One student at St. Lawrence Catholic School, aspires to be a police officer.
Asked to complete a project on Toronto Police and present it in front of the class, she became anxious and nervous.
“She discussed this concern with me and wished that the police could be there with her at school to make her feel comfortable,” said Jessica Gallie-Belliveau, the young girl’s mother. “I talked to my sister about the situation and it so happened she is good friends with an Auxiliary member.”
Ashton Fernandes, who is assigned to 42 Division, accepted the challenge.
Along with Peter Arvanitis who is assigned the 43 Division, they accompanied the girl to school on January 31.
“They stood at the front of the classroom with Mariah, held her project for the class to see and helped her when she got stuck at one point during the presentation,” said Gallie-Belliveau. “They answered questions, gave advice and told their stories on how they became Auxiliary members. My daughter felt like the coolest girl in the world and she will hold this beautiful memory in her heart forever. Those Auxiliary members went above and beyond to make her feel comfortable and confident during her first nerve-wrecking presentation.”
An Auxiliary member for two years, Fernandes was happy to assist the girl.
“When I learned that this little girl needed some assistance to make the presentation, I jumped at the opportunity,” he said. “I wanted to do whatever I could to make life better for her.”
Fernandes and Arvanitis are close friends.
“I took Peter because I wanted him to be part of the experience,” Fernandes added. “It was very meaningful for both of us.”