On August, 22nd the Richmond City Sheriff’s Office hosted its Annual Back to School Rally. The purpose of this event was to provide school supplies to the children who had a parent housed in the Richmond City Jail. Over 500 children were given supplies, book bags and lunch.
“Children of jail residents are the forgotten victims of their parent’s actions. Few of the children who attended the rally had ever experienced a positive encounter with law enforcement”, said Sheriff C.T. Woody, Jr.
“With their parents away, the rally allows our agency to reach out to the children and show them that we care. We wanted them to know that we were in the community to protect them and keep them safe. They should be able to come to us when they need help, not run away from us”, Woody continued.
More than 50 deputies and members of the command staff volunteered many hours of their time in order to make this event successful. Donations were accepted from jail vendors, local businesses and community leaders. Other public safety officials, Richmond Police and Fire Departments, family counselors and therapists were also on hand to support the event and interact with the children.
The three-hour event included face-painting, balloon art, free hot dogs, chips, drinks, popcorn and sno-cones, and performances by a gospel group. The Sheriff’s Office also used the opportunity to make sure that children were fingerprinted and registered through its CHILD ID program.