On February 25-26, LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Isaac (Redeemer - Spokane Valley, Washington) and his LCC K-9 Ministry team were honored to attend the 1st Responder Mental Health and Wellness Conference held in Spokane, Washington. Isaac's handlers Julie, Doug, Jody, and Corporal Terri Albright, LCC K-9 Police Ministry Coordinator, attended the conference. They were able to share the mercy, compassion, and presence of Jesus Christ with these dedicated men and women who serve our communities each day.
The 1st Responder Conference supports first responders and their families as its goal is pushing past traditional silence and bringing first responder wellness to our Everyday Heroes. Those that attended the conference included police, fire, military/veterans, corrections, dispatchers, chaplains, retired first responders, spouses, professional staff, clinicians, and all who work in the public safety field.
The LCC K-9 Ministry team was blessed to meet and connect with these everyday heroes and look forward to serving them in the future.
Please keep the firefighters, police officers, chaplains, 911 Call Center operators, and military in your prayers for God's protection, strength, and peace.
On Saturday, February 20, LCC K-9 Police Ministry Dogs Amos (Our Savior's Way - Ashburn, Virginia) with his law enforcement handlers Beth and Gary Cummings, and Kezia (Emmanuel - Baltimore, Maryland) with her law enforcement handlers Patrick Donnelly and ministry partner Ric Durham attended the C.O.P.S. (Concerns of Police Survivors) Maryland Chapter 1st Year Survivor's Event in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
The LCC K-9 Police Ministry teams spent time with the families of fallen police officers to serve and bring comfort and the presence and love of Christ to them.
The event included many activities for the families, including a ceremony to present flags to the families. The families also heard a wonderful message on "Resiliency" from U.S. Army (Ret.) Col. David Dodd.
The officers of these families made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty, and now their families are also making a sacrifice of going forward without their loved ones. Please remember these families in your prayers for God's comforting presence and strength. We continue to pray for the safety, protection, and wisdom of all who serve in law enforcement.
On Saturday, February 20, LCC K-9 Police Ministry Dog Julia (King of Glory - Elgin, Illinois) and her law enforcement handler, Corporate Terri Albright, visited Call Comm 9-1-1 Emergency Communication Center in Calumet Park, Illinois.
The top-notch, kind and compassionate individuals who work at this state-of-the-art emergency communication center are very busy dispatching for several municipal departments in the area.
They were grateful for the sweet moments spent with Julia. Here's their feedback:
I'd like to thank you and your team of Julia, Terri, and Carol; they were fantastic. I was impressed by how professional they were. They showed genuine interest in our people and center. They were informative of Julia, your mission, accessibility, and they showed true compassion for this tough industry that we have dedicated our lives to. Julia's visit was such a nice distraction for our dispatch group. We hope to be able to utilize your services in the future for another visit or for crisis response if able.
On Tuesday, December 22, LCC K-9 Police Ministry Dog Charity (Brookfield - Brookfield, Wisconsin) and her law enforcement handler stopped by the Village of Butler Police Department and Elm Grove Wisconsin Police Department for a holiday visit.
We presented both departments with mini stuffed Charity comfort dogs for their squad cars, ambulances and fire trucks. When they go out on a call that involves children, they can give the kids a "stuffy" to cling onto to feel a little bit of comfort in a scary situation. We also gave each department a little gift of some delicious coffee for the station to enjoy during the Christmas season.
"I love visiting with the police departments and love my first responder and dispatch friends. Thank you for always picking up the call and always helping others with courage and bravery."
On Tuesday, December 15, LCC K-9 Police Ministry Dog Julia (King of Glory – Elgin, Illinois) with law enforcement handler Corporal Terri Albright from the DuPage County Sheriff’s Office, assisted in wrapping gifts to support the Story Book Program at the DuPage County Correctional Facility. This program is a collaboration with JUST of DuPage and SCARCE (School & Community Assistance for Recycling and Composting Education) where 51 children will receive gifts on behalf of their incarcerated parent. Once a month, inmates who are enrolled in the program record themselves reading a story book or chapters of a longer book. The recordings and copies of the books supplied by SCARCE are then sent to their children.
“It’s wonderful to see the connections and impact that K-9 Comfort Dog Julia is making with the inmates each time she visits with me. Inmates involved in this program know they’ve made serious mistakes but many are working to turn their life around,” said Corporal Albright. “Having the chance to feel the non-judgmental comfort and friendship of Julia gives them the hope and encouragement they need during the difficulties of incarceration and rehabilitation.”
“A lot of people don’t realize that incarceration leaves a family behind and those people aren’t suspects. They’re victims. They’re dealing with the holidays and everything else going on the in world with a parent incarcerated,” said Sheriff James Mendrick. “That’s got to be a tough thing to live with at home. I think this is going to make a big impact where it’s really needed.”
“Christmas is a hard enough time as it is for these children and this year we have no visitation to top it off,” said JUST Executive Director Michael Beary. “We already knew these inmates’ backgrounds and we know they are connected to their children through the Story Book program so it just seemed like the best fit for the money that otherwise would have been spent on a holiday party.”
DuPage County Board District 2 Member Liz Galgano Chaplin, who has long provided children’s books for the waiting room children’s library, assisted with wrapping and preparing the gifts for shipping.
On Thursday, December 17, K-9 Police Ministry Dog Julia and Corporal Albright returned to help JUST of DuPage staff in giving Prison Pack gift bags to every inmate at the DuPage County Correctional Facility.
JUST of DuPage (http://www.justofdupage.com), is a nonprofit organization working to meet the needs of inmates in the DuPage County Correctional Facility and their families with a Christian mission to share God’s love to incarcerated men and women. JUST empowers inmates to pursue rehabilitation and make positive life changes by offering a broad range of services, including addition recovery, education, spiritual enrichment and social services.