The Grand Prairie Citizen Police Academy Alumni Association had a busy and fun year in 2013. With a membership of 110 at year end, all members had an opportunity to help or be involved in our various projects. Many of our members work full time jobs, therefore volunteer support comes from all directions and times.
Above all we know we are helping our Grand Prairie Police Department. We have been successful in our three main projects; support the twice a year CPA classes in whatever they need; organize and host the Annual Grand Prairie Police Department Awards Banquet; and organize the annual rummage sale to raise funds.
In 2013 we had 14 projects completed with the knowledge that we did our best and the projects were well deserving. Some of the projects we supported and helped were the Police Honor Guard, the Explores Group, the K-9 Unit, Halloween donations, the EMT group, National Night Out, the Chief’s appreciation outing for officers, and the Santa Cop Program.
We do have one activity outside the police department, which is volunteering our labor for the annual “Prairie Lights”. We are delighted to volunteer for this Grand Prairie program.
We look forward to a wonderful 2014 year. If you are not a member, please attend a Citizen Police Academy class held by the Grand Prairie Police Department and then join our organization. For information on the CPA classes go to http://www.gptx.org/index.aspx?page=610 or call the GPPD Volunteer Coordinator 972-237-8998.
GPCPAAA for the third time provided volunteer help at various stations to support the City of Grand Prairie's " Prairie Lights" on December 23, 2013. All members had a good time and enjoyed helping the Parks & Rec. Department
Rummage Sale of September 14, 2013 was very successful. Funds raised have gone to items that the Grand Prairie Police Department were in need of. Not only did we do the sale on Friday, and Saturday, we extended it to Sunday. All areas of sales items sold very well. We would like to thank everyone for their donations, especially the police officers.
This was our first rummage sale, and as usually, you learn what works and what does not work. By early indications, we will do another rummage sale in 2014. We will stay away from large furniture items.
Some of our GPCPAAA members volunteer for the Grand Prairie Police Department's new Citizens on Patrol (COP) and Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) programs.
These programs provide the opportunity for trained citizen volunteers to assist their police department with designated non-confrontational activities as citizen patrollers and administrative volunteers in order to increase citizen understanding and participation in police activities, enhance crime prevention, and provide additional resources to improve service to the community.
Led by Grand Prairie Police Chief Steve Dye, Grand Prairie Police Officers will run 4.8 miles to show support for Special Olympics at the 2012 Law Enforcement Torch Run on Wednesday, May 23, 8:30 a.m.-11 a.m. The event is not a fund raiser, but just a show of support for children with special needs in Grand Prairie. Students from schools on the route will stand in front of their schools to cheer for the runners. The schedule is as follows:
On March 21, 2012 the Grand Prairie Citizen Police Academy Alumni Association hosted the “Annual Grand Prairie Police Awards Banquet” at the Ruthe Jackson Center. The banquet was held to recognize special achievement and award certificates and meritorious service bars to police officers and personal for the 2011-12 year.
The master of ceremonies for the banquet was Rick Herold, Director of Grand Prairie Parks and Recreation. The banquet dinner had remarks by: Mayor Charles England, City Manager Tom Hart, and Police Chief Steve Dye with Robert E. Casey, Jr. , special agent in charge of the FBI Dallas field office, as a guest speaker and Emil Balliet, Grand Prairie Department chaplain, giving the Invocation.
Among the awards this year was a special recognition for Sergeant Chris Chopin for his 32 years of service within the SWAT unit.We would like to thank ours sponsors for their support.
On January 1st, 2012 the current non profit Citizens on Patrol will cease to exist. It is being replaced with the new Citizens on Patrol under the City of Grand Prairie.
The Grand Prairie Police Department's Citizens On Patrol (COP) program provides the opportunity for trained citizen volunteers to assist their police department with designated non-confrontational activities as citizen patrollers and administrative volunteers in order to increase citizen understanding and participation in police activities, enhance crime prevention, and provide additional resources to improve service to the community.
COP volunteers help patrol the city in specially marked decommissioned police cars. Members are trained to work with the police department to act as additional "eyes and ears" to help to report criminal activity and issues requiring the attention of city resources.
Members of the new Citizens on Patrol will be Volunteer employees of the City of Grand Prairie. These steps are being taken because the City will be providing official training, uniforms and vehicles for use by the Citizens on Patrol. They will also takeover manning & moving the SkyBox’s around the City. You can apply for the COP program here. You do not need to be a member of the GPCPAAA to apply.
Congratulations to Lieutenant Robert Severance who will be transferred to head the new Community Services division. He will will oversee the Citizens on Patrol program as well as many other community oriented programs. One of which will be Volunteers in Police Service or VIPS later in 2012.
The GPCPAAA will continue to support and promote the Grand Prairie Police Department and the Grand Prairie Citizens Police Academy classes through volunteer and fundraising activities as well as providing candidates for these new programs.
At the September meeting, the CPA Alumni recognized the hard work and dedication of the Grand Prairie K9 Unit. In March, all 4 Officers and thier canine partners earned high honors in the United States Police Canine Association's field trials held in Cedar Hill. Gift certificates were presented to the Officers along with community donations from PetSmart and treats from Bil Jac.