Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Heather's Corner: Always on the Lookout For Oro Valley Police Volunteers

I'm sure you've seen them. The Oro Valley Police Vehicles marked "Volunteer" cruising the streets and business parking lots of our town. My children know them as the "candy-givers" from the thoughtful candy bags they passed out throughout our neighborhoods last Halloween. But what exactly do these "volunteers" do? It turns out they do a lot.

The Citizen Volunteer Assistants ("CVAP") Program provides is for those over the age of 50, interested in helping the Oro Valley Police Department in both emergency and non-emergency situations. And although they are not trained in enforcing traffic laws, they are extra eyes and ears around our town ensuring safe neighborhoods and businesses.

Other duties of the CVAP include:
  • Providing officers with assistance at accidents, incidents and events. 
  • Routinely helping citizens needing directions or assisting after their vehicle breaks down. 
  • Utilize a patrol car equipped with a License Plate Reader that detects stolen vehicles, stolen license plates, warrants and missing people. 
  • The Volunteers also have members on a call out team that are contacted when patrol officers need their assistance at a scene.  They have been called out for incidents including gas leaks, neighborhood evacuations as well as fatal traffic accidents. 
  • Assist at public events such as Dispose-A-Med, Shred-A-Thon and National Night Out. 
  • Provide perimeter home inspection for citizens who vacate homes throughout the year, known as the Darkhouse program.
Chief of Police, Daniel Sharp, says of the program, "I consider every volunteer to be an important member of the Department. Every hour a volunteer contributes to making your community a better place to live is time well spent." He acknowledges, though rewarding, the work can at times be very challenging.

It's obvious that these volunteers contribute greatly to our community and we are fortunate to have a program like CVAP.

If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a volunteer, more information can be found on the town's website or by calling Sgt. Amy Graham ((520) 229-5081) of the Oro Valley Police Department.
Heather Nenadovich has lived in Oro Valley for 6 years. She has a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Arizona. She loves gardening, nature, art, and travel. Currently her two young children fill up most of her days (and nights) with chaotic bliss. Oro Valley favorites: memorial bench at the entrance of Romero Canyon Trail in Catalina State Park, Toscana Studio and Gallery, OV Fall Festival, the gumption and determination of OV residents!

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