by Annie Dockery

Belton Police Foundation (aka Belton Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association) 501c3 non-profit has supported the Belton Police since 2012 by providing resources to purchase equipment, resources, and programs beyond the capacity of the police department’s budget.
Belton Police Foundation President, Charisse Bennett said, ” The Foundation provides an avenue for the community to make charitable donations benefiting the Belton Police Department and we are always looking for sponsors, individuals or businesses, to help make our events successful.”
Candice Griffin, Support Services Manager, Belton Police Department said, “Their support, prayers, and confidence are unmatched, particularly in the hardest times. They are literal life savers”
Belton Police Foundation hosts fundraising events including silent auctions, selling police-supportive merchandise at vendor events, and raffles.
“Coming soon we are hosting our first motorcycle charity ride and a golf tournament!” Bennett said.
Benett said, “Some examples of our support efforts are the expansion of the police department’s fitness room and furnishing a relaxation room that is available to BPD employees in times of inclement weather or to rest between back-to-back shifts. The Belton Police Foundation continually purchases equipment that is useful to officers such as Individual First Aid Kits, handcuff keys, and more.
Police Chief Gene Ellis said, “They provide moral support such as cards in officer mailboxes, recognition of significant events, kind words around the building, and meals. Financial support from the Foundation has provided lifesaving equipment and other items that assist PD staff in being prepared to serve.
The reach of the BPF goes beyond the department to include the Belton PD’s families.
“The Foundation awards a scholarship to a child of a Belton PD employee who is graduating high school for their post-secondary education (this is in addition to the scholarship that is awarded to all BISD zoned seniors). Additionally, we host an annual awards banquet that recognizes the hard work and sacrifice of the Belton Police Department employees,” Bennett said.
The Belton Police Department annually hosts the Belton Citizens Police Academy. After graduating the alumni are eligible to become members of the BPF.
“If you would like to join the Belton Police Foundation, we would love to have you! The first step is to graduate the 8-week course of the Belton Citizens Police Academy that is offered in the Spring of each year.” Bennett said, “To apply for this program, you may visit the City of Belton website or call the police department for more information.”
For more information and to stay updated on the fundraising events of the Belton Police Foundation, the Belton Police Foundation Facebook page or visit their bright red tent on Belton Market Days for Back the Blue merchandise.