By Mary O’KEEFE
The public is invited and encouraged to attend the Glendale Police Explorers’ fundraiser on Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Glendale Police Dept. Community Room.
The Explorers are middle and high school aged kids, some who are interested in a career in law enforcement and some who are not. Those kids who have gone on to universities have taken with them the experience and training in leadership they received while an Explorer while others go into law enforcement, said Lt. Lola Abrahamian.
“[We have a former Explorer] who went on to be a cadet and is now going into the academy,” Abrahamian said.
The Explorers volunteer at several events including Soroptimist Bras for a Cause, Glendale Healthy Kids, Derby Day and the Montrose Christmas Parade.
The program is designed to build self-confidence, team building and leadership skills. Those who want to be an Explorer must apply and go through a background check. They meet every Tuesday evening at the GPD station.
During the year several competitions are held when Explorers from other stations compete in various scenarios that highlight the teams’ training and knowledge of law enforcement. Participation in these competitions must be paid for through fundraising; no funds come from the GPD to support the program. The team members must also pay for uniforms. The Explorers had been raising money by collecting recyclables at the GPD station, which they still do; however, Abrahamian wanted to hold a fundraiser that not only highlighted the kids but also raised funds for future competitions and other events.
She added the program is valuable to the community as Explorers help with so many events.
Several members of the community and local organizations, like the Glendale Police Association, have donated to the fundraiser with prizes that include jewelry and a 40-inch television.
The event is on Wednesday, May 28, from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at GPD Community Room, 131 N. Isabel St. in Glendale. Entrance fee is $10 and the money raised will go directly to the Explorer Unit and is tax deductible.