Summer is a time for kids to enjoy lots of fun activities. This year, 30 lucky Silver Spring children got to spend a week at the fourth annual Police Adventure Camp at Viers Mill. Run by Montgomery County police officers, this non-profit camp provided services to at-risk children and their families, according to a Gazette.net article.
Activities at the camp included sports and crafts as well as some more important life lessons. The children completed the Drug Abuse Resistance Education or D.A.R.E. program to understand the dangers of substance abuse. They also listened to guest speakers and interacted with the officers in various ways.
It was quite an eclectic range of activities from making tie-dyed tee shirts to going inside the S.W.A.T. team van and meeting a bomb-sniffing police dog. There was also a trip to the Montgomery County Circuit Court building for a tour and to learn a bit of how the judicial system works.
The goal was to teach the kids that they're responsible for their choices and to make them aware of how those choices will affect both them and their families. An additional bonus is that the kids are then more likely to trust and work with police once back in their Silver Spring neighborhoods.
Donations from businesses and grants helped to fund the camp and lunches were donated by local restaurants. There was so much interest in this year's camp that organizers had to create a waiting list.
When asked, the children had lots of praise for the camp and its activities. One young girl stated that because of her camp experience she'd like to become a police officer. And of course the officers feel great about being able to make a difference in children's lives.
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