For most children we minister to, they are taught to fear local law enforcement and as a result don’t respect them. However, we are trying to combat this in several ways. The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office has a program called Adopt-a-Cop, which is a program for Jacksonville residents to pick a police officer in their area and pray for them and show them love and appreciation. We have adopted two JSO cops, Officer Sharmonique McDaniel and Officer Brad Hensley. Officer McDaniel works in the Southside apartments area, so each week our Southside site prays for her. Officer Hensley works in the Desert Winds area, so just like Southside, our Desert Winds site prays for him each week.
At the end of the fall semester, we had Officer Hensley and Officer McDaniel come and visit their respective sites. The kids enjoyed getting to know a local law enforcement officer and were able to ask them questions and at the end prayed over the officers. We believe this can help change the children’s view of law enforcement and teach them to love others, no matter their occupation. Throughout the next semester we hope to adopt a cop for each of our sites and show our love and appreciation for our local police officers.