Wednesday, November 7, 2007

A Peace Officer Promoting Peace

In January of 2006, after a year at the facility, I joined the Community Corrections Planning Committee (CCPC). A committee at our facility that is responsible for officer appreciation, hosting retirement celebrations, and community efforts such as helping/donating to the Ronald McDonald Home, Buddy Walk and such. The day I entered I expressed my desire to assist the community by creating a program for school age youth that encouraged making the right choices. The committee agreed and supported the idea. The training Corporal in charge of the committee allowed me to write a curriculum for the program so it could be submitted to appropriate administration. I submitted a curriculum for the elementary age; the Corporal in training reviewed it and made changes to it, placing it in a format to be reviewed. I then drew up a separate curriculum for middle school and high school age. It was also critiqued, submitted and approved. This whole process took a year! Yes, EVERYTHING moves slowly in a government setting. In the spring of this year, 2007, I sent letters regarding the program to all Fayette County Schools advising them of the available program and encouraging them to schedule uniformed officers to conduct sessions in individual classrooms. The program was presented to over 500 students before the summer break began. This week, our sessions were scheduled again and we presented to approximately 120 students, 3rd, 4th and 5th graders, six separate sessions.
Let me say right here, “Hats off to our teachers!” To spend 7 hours a day with the diversity, the energy, the needs for guidance, attention and care that these individuals, our teachers, face five days a week…having a part of the summer off is not even enough appreciation to show to them…nor are their salaries. I applaud your efforts to educate and be positive role models for our youth. It is simply exhausting, kind of like exercising though…exhausting but rewarding.
Today on Mrs. Who's Open Book blog she advised of those all over who are writing their thoughts about peace. As I stood in front of so many children today, dodging their stories and directing them to ask questions instead, receiving questions that made me flinch inside, seeing children that could use some tender loving care, and watching…watching them, some who already had a “I’m tough” attitude “Jail is cool”, another pretended to roll a joint and then proceeded to imitate taking a drag, he held his breathe and then slowly he released it, I knew what I wanted for these children, my grandchildren, children all over this planet. Peace. Peace in not having to worry about older teenage girls sexually harassing them. Peace in not worrying about their moms, their dads, being in jail. Peace without the influence of drugs and alcohol. Peace in knowing they will wake up to food and seasonally appropriate clothing. Peace that one finds in the comforting arms of those who love them unconditionally. Peace walking down the street, never to be bothered by a deviant stranger. Peace in entering the Internet highway without seeing harmful material or being approached by predators. Last month, I heard about a ten year old female committing suicide. This week I was told about a nine year old that was successful in taking his life. Peace, dear little ones.
Right here in our own community, we need to spread peace, making every effort to remember they need us. Maybe a smile is all we can give some, maybe, time or material possessions are possible. When our hands are tied and we have done all that we can do for the children of our community, may we remember to pray peace for them. May we live in such a way that we inspire others to be kind, caring and compassionate in doing so create an atmosphere that promotes peace.


Dustmogie said...

A very good post from someone who has by far surpassed my ability to deal with difficult teenagers. My hat is off to you!

Mrs. Who said...

Can you give me more information about the program? It sounds like something we might like to present at my school. Email me privately. Thanks!