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By Bedford County Sheriff Mike Brown
“Of all the programs we have at the sheriff’s office, I am exceptionally proud of our volunteer programs. ~Sheriff Brown
Since 1999, volunteer programs have flourished, helping not only the sheriff’s office, but also Bedford’s citizens, seniors, and businesses throughout the entire county.
Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association (CPAAA) are graduates of the Citizens Police Academy and assist with traffic control and parking at all county football games and participate in community safety education such as seatbelt enforcement and teen safety events.
The SCALES program is Senior Citizens Assisting Law Enforcement Services, also established in 1999 by Sheriff Brown. Volunteers visit with elderly county citizens who are housebound or disabled. They visit, chat and take note of their well-being, which is then reported back to the care giver or family member.
Project Lifesaver assists Alzheimer patients and their families. Volunteers fit the patients with wrist bands and are specially trained to use tracking devices in the case of a patient wandering off. Volunteers also visit to replace wristband batteries and test the unit.
The TRIAD team is an active group which not only supports the sheriff’s office with answering phones, filing, and other internal operations, they also are utilized in daily office duties at the courthouse.
Neighborhood Watch currently has 39 groups who patrol their neighborhoods, deterring would-be criminals, vandals and speeders coming into their community.
Retired Senior Volunteer Patrol, (RSVP) was established in 2001 and is now 22 members strong. RSVP are specially trained to provide escorts for funerals, traffic control, unlock vehicles, issue warning tickets for illegal parking in handicap and fire lanes, and assist stranded motorists. All of these volunteer programs help keep deputies on the road, in their beats, answering “calls for service”.
Our volunteers have saved citizens thousands of dollars thanks to their dedicated service. Join our next Police Academy to see if you’ve got what it takes to become a Sheriff’s Office Volunteer. The next class begins on September 20. Please call Sgt Mays 586-7718 for more information!