Donations keep coming in as Wellington pulls together to keep its school resource officer program intact.
Wellington Music owner Steve Neff presented superintendent Dennis Mock with a check Monday for $1,325 while at a meet-and-greet at Main Street Wellington. Representatives from Sprenger Health Care Systems also attended and gave Mock a check for $115.
The combined cash was raised at a Sept. 26 fundraiser by downtown businesses. For example, Takedown Tactical gave 20 percent of its total sales for the day and Colonial Barbershop donated $1 for each haircut and sold hotdogs for the cause.
“We were just trying to raise whatever we could,” said Neff, who spearheaded the push to keep the program afloat. “The business community really stepped up.”
Marie Storrow of Sprenger Health Care said the Elms Retirement Village was more than willing to help once workers heard about the need.
“It’s part of our town,” she said. “It does a great service for our kids and our community.”
Police chief Tim Barfield said he and the department are actively looking for a permanent solution that will keep Wellington officers on patrol in village schools.
“It’s not just for the schools,” he said. “It benefits the school, it benefits the police department, and it benefits the entire community.”
Five full-time officers and one part-time officer now know every inch of all three buildings in the district.
“It gives our employees and our students a feeling of security,” Mock said.
Lt. Jeff Shelton said he and the other full-time school officers are building relationships with the staff and students.
The program needs about $13,000 more to fund a police presnce through the end of the school year. As of now, officers will only be on patrol in the buildings until the end of February.
The total fundraising goal is $30,000.
The Wellington board of education accepted three more donations Tuesday for the SRO program totalling $1,057. The bulk came from an anonymous donor.
Neff said he’s working to schedule more fundraisers to help reach the overall goal. He encourages anyone interested in making a donation to stop by Wellington Music or Main Street Wellington.
“We’ll continue with anything we can to support it,” he said.
Kelsey Leyva can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @TWE_KelseyLeyva on Twitter.
Photo by Kelsey Leyva | Wellington Enterprise
Local business owners, Main Street Wellington representatives, police chief Tim Barfield, and Lt. Jeff Shelton meet with superintendent Dennis Mock to present the Wellington Schools with $1,440 to support the school resource office program.