The Sheriff’s Office unveiled its new Worship Watch program May 4 during the Sheriff’s Office’s second “Faith Leadership Summit” at Patrick Henry High School. Here, leaders from over 80 churches, various ministries, and non-profit organizations representing more than 50,000 citizens learned about this new program, which aims to streamline communication and enhance partnerships with the faith-based community.
This follows the first “Faith Leadership Summit,” held in September 2013, where leaders from over 65 additional churches, various ministries, and non-profit organizations were represented.
“This program has been a vision of the Sheriff’s Office for several years, and I’m pleased that it has become a reality,” said Colonel David R. Hines, sheriff. “Thus far, the response has been overwhelming. I’m grateful to everyone who made this possible, as well as for the valuable feedback and direction from those who attended our faith leadership summits. Inevitably, this ongoing partnership will allow us to reach thousands of people, which will benefit our entire community in countless ways, but especially as it relates to keeping Hanover safe.”
Similar to the well-established Neighborhood Watch and Business Watch programs, Worship Watch is a community partnership designed to share information, identify resources, and respond to community needs. To accomplish this, the Sheriff’s Office will: Designate Sheriff’s Office personnel to serve as liaisons with program participants; provide participants with up-to-date electronic notices about community crime trends; conduct regular meetings to ensure a lasting partnership; identify and create opportunities for networking of resources in times of community need; provide materials and resources to educate participants on areas of public safety and security; provide information about the Sheriff’s Office facility security assessment program; provide participants with an opportunity to better support those they serve; and provide participants with a Worship Watch sticker to be posted in a conspicuous place signifying their participation in the program and a visible message to would-be criminals.
For more information about this program or how to join, please contact the Crime Prevention Unit at (804) 365-6110 or visit www.hanovercounty.gov/Sheriff/Worship-Watch/.