Maple Shade Police Chaplain Activity Summary 2016
There were 20 Police Chaplain Activations for 2016.
85% of those activations dealt with the loss of life (unattended deaths, attended deaths, fatal car crash, death notifications for other towns and suicide).
Remaining 15% of the activations dealt with a house fire, shooting and First Responder care.
Police Chaplains also performed ceremonial duties at the township council reorganization meeting, banquets, county wide Rotary function and local Rotary meetings.
Police Chaplains worked extensively with the School Resource Officer to help divert juvenile offenders from the Juvenile Justice System into our Stationhouse Adjustment program, providing safe locations for community service and providing mentoring/counseling for at risk youth.
Police Chaplains and Maple Shade PD (under the direction of Chief Gary Gubbei) in partnership with our community supporters organized the 1st Annual National Night Out Event in August 2016 which was a free, family fun event. It was an overwhelming success welcoming all to our Main Street area to celebrate the positive attributes that bring us together as a community. The Chaplains also doubled their efforts in holding a food drive in conjunction with the Police Benevolent Association (PBA Local #267) and the Dunk A Cop program, where all food donated and all money raised from the dunk tank was immediately used to help stock and supply our Maple Shade Food Bank at a time when the shelves are normally running low. We are hard at work planning the second event for Tuesday August 1, 2017 and expect to go even bigger and better, so please plan to attend!
Police Chaplains have also worked hard in forming relationships with our first responders and their families. Understanding the challenges a career in public safety brings, the Chaplains have mentored, counseled and simply listened when it was needed most. They integrated themselves into the operation of the police department to include our training components like active shooter and scenario training. As one chaplain stated, they had no idea how much information an officer needed to know and how fast they needed to know it, when making life and death decisions within fractions of a second. It has made them as a Chaplain appreciate the officers of this department even more and understand the impact those tense and often unpredictable life changing decisions can have on an officer and their family.
For 2017, the Police Chaplains are embarking on expanding our role with the police department on working with at risk youth, community outreach, becoming more active in family crisis situations, beginning to lay the foundation for partnering with service organizations addressing the opioid crisis and continuing to expand our training and fellowship with other Police Chaplains throughout the county, making necessary connections and building bridges of hope as we move together as a team.
The Police Chaplains would like to sincerely thank all those who have worked so hard behind the scenes to make our program a success and it is our hope to continue to positively impact the lives of those living, working, shopping, traveling through and worshipping in Maple Shade.