IPC program promotes child safety

| July 10, 2014 | 0 Comments
Sgt. Frank Poppa (front), 13th Military Police Detachment, 728th MP Battalion, 8th MP Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, helps (from left) Isaijah Rutledge, Antonio Redmon, Wildy Rivera, Evelyn Rmairez and Bayleigh Noble pick up trash surrounding Kaena Community Center during a recent Kids on Patrol meeting. (Photo by Sheryl Ferido, Island Palm Communities)

Sgt. Frank Poppa (front), 13th Military Police Detachment, 728th MP Battalion, 8th MP Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, helps (from left) Isaijah Rutledge, Antonio Redmon, Wildy Rivera, Evelyn Rmairez and Bayleigh Noble pick up trash surrounding Kaena Community Center during a recent Kids on Patrol meeting. (Photo by Sheryl Ferido, Island Palm Communities)

Sarah Pacheco, Hawaii Army Weekly, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — With schools set to start in less than a month, many parents have their hands full buying supplies and registering their children for classes.

But now also is a good time for parents to consider what their keiki will be doing after school hours.

Keiki do their part to keep their neighborhood and play areas clean by picking up rubbish surrounding Kaena Community Center during a recent Kids on Patrol meeting at the center at Schofield Barracks. (Photo by Sarah Pacheco, Honolulu Star-Advertiser)

Keiki do their part to keep their neighborhood and play areas clean by picking up rubbish surrounding Kaena Community Center during a recent Kids on Patrol meeting at the center at Schofield Barracks. (Photo by Sarah Pacheco, Honolulu Star-Advertiser)

Island Palm Communities recently launched an alternative afternoon outlet for children ages 10-14 called Kids on Patrol.

“Kids on Patrol is a concept to help kids do something constructive during the school year,” said Sheryl Ferido, IPC community services manager.

“These kids were generally here anyway; they just didn’t have any direction to go in,” Ferido explained. “We teach them about safety, we teach them about teamwork, and we teach them about responsibility to themselves, others and the environment.”

Kids on Patrol meets from 2-4 p.m. every Wednesday at Kaena Community Center, here.
Each meeting begins with a briefing on a different safety subject, led by speakers from the Federal Fire Department, the Directorate of Emergency Services’ bike patrol or the Adolescent Support and Counseling Services (ASACS), based at Bldg. 647, here.

“I’m looking to involve Army Community Service’s FAP (Family Advocacy Program), also, so we can talk more about the home-alone elements,” Ferido noted.

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Bayleigh Noble (left), Evelyn Ramirez (middle) and Wildy Rivera help keep Kaena Community Center clean during a recent Kids on Patrol meeting at the center, here. (Photo by Sheryl Ferido, Island Palm Communities)

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Bayleigh Noble (left), Evelyn Ramirez (middle) and Wildy Rivera help keep Kaena Community Center clean during a recent Kids on Patrol meeting at the center, here. (Photo by Sheryl Ferido, Island Palm Communities)

Kids then go out and “patrol” for trash around Kaena Community Center, which, according to Ferido, teaches them about community service.

“Afterward, we have an activity for them that usually involves some sort of outdoor physical activity in a friendly, nonpressure environment,” Ferido said, adding that each quarter, kids are treated to a special event, such as a pizza party or awards ceremony, to acknowledge their participation in the program.

“Basically, it’s teaching them safety, community responsibility and teamwork and collaboration … and to get out of the video-game seats and come out and play when the weather is good!” Ferido laughed.

The program began March 5 with 15 members, who have quickly gone from school acquaintances to BFFs (best friends forever).

“They didn’t know each other all in the beginning, but now they’ve built this bond,” Ferido said. “They’re building new alliances, which is especially important for those going from middle school to high school or from elementary school to middle school.”

“Everyone here’s my friend,” said 11-year-old Antonio Redmon. “I enjoy the things that we do, like how we get to pick up trash to help the community.”

“They treat us really nice, and I learn a lot of stuff from the speeches,” agreed Wildy Rivera, also 11. “They talk about home safety and school safety and neighborhood safety, like not to talk to strangers. And I learned about water safety, like if you’re not a very strong swimmer, you have to go in the kiddie pool.”

“I learned that you can’t trust strangers, and you can’t give out your (personal) information, so you can be safe and have no danger,” added Antonio. “Everybody should come to (Kids on Patrol). It’ll be fun for everybody.”

Registration forms for Kids on Patrol are available at the Kaena Community Center office. According to Ferido, the program is open primarily to children who live in IPC communities, but any military-dependent child who wishes to join won’t be turned away.

Justin Fienhold (left), a counselor at ASACS, quizzes keiki on what they should do to stay safe while on base during a Kids on Patrol meeting at Kaena Community Center. (Photo by Sarah Pacheco, Honolulu Star-Advertiser)

Justin Fienhold (left), a counselor at ASACS, quizzes keiki on what they should do to stay safe while on base during a Kids on Patrol meeting at Kaena Community Center. (Photo by Sarah Pacheco, Honolulu Star-Advertiser)

“Parents are always welcome to come, too, no matter what their children’s ages are,” Ferido said. “And all kids of all ages are welcome; however, if they are under 10 years old, the parent has to stay the entire time, because of the USAG-HI Policy 34.

“These kids really own it. They want to come, and they want to do it. And we’re hoping to build this program into other community centers, but I can’t do that unless I have the support of other agencies,” Ferido added. “I’d really like to get more agencies and programs involved. As long as it benefits the kids, I’m open to it.”

More Options
U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii’s Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation offers several before- and after-school activities and programs available to families under its Child, Youth and School Services division. They include the following:

•Child Development Centers,
•The EDGE!
•Family Child Care,
•Hired! Teen Apprenticeships,
•Middle School and Teen Centers,
•School-Age Services,
•SKIES Unlimited, and
•Youth Sports.

To learn more about any of these programs, visit www.himwr.com/cyss-welcome-page.

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Category: Community, Education, Safety, Sustainability

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