Fenland District Council and the England Illegal Money Lending Team have joined together to launch a new campaign which will raise awareness of the dangers of loan sharks and illegal money lending.
The campaign is a priority in the action plan for the Fenland Community Safety Partnership with a wide range of organisations involved across Fenland including Cambridgeshire Constabulary, Rainbow Saver Anglia Credit Union, Blackfield Creatives, local taxi companies and a selection of Fenland primary schools.
In addition to raising awareness of the dangers of illegal money lending and the damage it can do to communities, the campaign will also highlight the key signs to spot a loan shark and the steps that residents can take to report them.
Cllr Andrew Lynn, Fenland District Council's Portfolio Holder responsible for Community Safety said: "Loan sharks and illegal money lenders often take advantage of those most vulnerable in our society and by stopping them from preying on those who need assistance and instead offering support to their victims we can make Fenland a safer place for everyone."
"We fully support this project to raise awareness of scams and illegal money lending and we feel it is vitally important that children are able to spot the signs that something is wrong too, especially when they are online or receive phone calls from unknown numbers."
Assemblies and creative workshops will be hosted throughout June for Year 6 students at Burrowmoor Primary School in March, Orchards Church of England Primary School in Wisbech and Ramnoth Junior School in Wisbech. These assemblies and creative workshops will give young people the tools and knowledge they need to stay safe and make responsible financial decisions.
Posters and signs featuring key messages from the campaign will also be displayed in each of Fenland's four market towns. Displays will be set up in local libraries and community centres with posters also being displayed on parish notice boards and in high traffic areas such as the Horsefair Shopping Centre in Wisbech.
Elsewhere, window stickers will be displayed in the back of many of Fenland's local taxis with Cambridgeshire Constabulary having committed to displaying the stickers in the back of their vehicles as well.
Fenland District Council's distinctive purple operational vehicles will also receive a makeover as they are clad in a new loan shark awareness livery to further highlight key messages.
The campaign will run throughout June and July and you can find more information on illegal money lending by visiting: https://www.stoploansharks.co.uk