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Sheriff’s golf tourney to benefit the community

Sheriff Brad White is sponsoring the second annual Wednesday After the Masters golf tournament, a benefit for the Lamar sheriff’s office community programs, Wednesday, April 15, at Morgan Dairy Golf Course. Registration begins at noon with a 1 p.m. shotgun start. The cost is $300 for a four-person team with teams limited to the first 25 to sign up. The cost includes a golfer gift bag, range balls, greens fees, golf cart and lunch. There will be first through third place prizes for teams, a hole-in-one contest and a raffle. Mulligans can be bought for $10 with a two per person limit. Raffle tickets are $5 each or five for $20. Sponsorships are available for $100. Checks can be made payable to the LCSO community affairs office. For information contact Ginger Story at 770-358-5377 or gstory@lamarcountysheriff. com. ’Every agency experiences shortfalls in funding for programs such as these through the years. Budget crunches of recent years have left the programs completely unfunded by the county. Being able to continue providing these important programs depends on funding from other sources, such as the golf tournament, and community support. Our office also has used forfeited drug funds and grants to help continue these positive and preventive programs. We are more than ever committed to partnership with the community and would appreciate your support for the tournament and throughout the year,’ said White. Programs explained Story and White elaborated on the programs benefitting from the golf tournament proceeds, including Choosing Healthy Activities and Methods Promoting Safety (CHAMPS) for fifth-graders, taught by school resource officers; the Law Enforcement Explorer program at the high school and the Citizens Firearms Safety Course. Training for community groups on several topics is available, Story said, each session presented by a deputy trained in crime prevention and presentations. Topics frequently requested include neighborhood watch, church security consultations, E-911 education, car seat installation and drug and alcohol awareness. CHAMPS reaches all fifth graders in cooperation with the elementary school, Story said. ‘The educational ‘“ and fun ‘“ program is aimed at giving them the best possible chance for adult success. School administrators and law enforcement agencies recognize that today’s students face dangers older generations couldn’t have imagined. Lessons include alcohol dangers, bullying, choices and consequences, positive alternatives, marijuana/ methamphetamine information and peer pressure.’ The sheriff’s office held CHAMPS camps last summer and will begin registration soon for this year’s camps, open to all students entering fifth or sixth grades in the 2015-16 school year. Camp activities include day trips, local excursions, games and projects related to program goals. In an attempt to bridge the gap between high school students and law enforcement, the LCSO also implemented the Law Enforcement Explorer Program. ’There are 22 members who get to experience several different aspects of law enforcement they might not otherwise see, such as the popular crime scene investigation aspect,’ said White. Explorer activities center on building confidence, Georgia Law, developing community oriented assisting skills and education about law enforcement procedures. The members get to wear specially designed uniforms identifying them with the program, added Story. The Citizens Firearms Safety Course was offered for the first time in 2013 and there is a waiting list for the spring and summer classes. Nearly 100 individuals have completed the one-day course in basic gun laws, gun safety, gun malfunctions, safe storage and range etiquette. Practical training takes place at the Lamar County shooting range after the classroom session, Story said. ’There’s a lot of enthusiasm for this program,’ said White. ‘We believe by having citizens who are informed about guns, what can and can’t be done with them by law and how to use them, makes ours a safer community,’ said the sheriff.

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