For Pierce Police go above and beyond to spread Christmas cheer
Fort Pierce Police officers joined in the holiday spirit by picking up toys, delivering gifts, providing families with the fixings for meals, and escorting kids on shopping sprees.
Each year, the department pulls out all stops to help as many local families in need celebrate Christmas. Because of the generosity of area
businesses, individuals and organizations, the department was able to help more families and children this year than it did last year.
Through the department’s Santa Cop program, approximately 542 children were served, more than doubling the number of children served in 2013. The gifts provided to nearly 200 families came from Victory’s St. Lucie County Toy Run and its many supporters. This year the department
focused on victims of crimes need help with gifts for children. Hundreds of toys were collected during the event held on December 14, 2014.
Interim Chief Frank J. Amandro took time out of his schedule on December 19, 2014 to pick up toys from the Fort Pierce Elks Lodge 1520 that were collected for the Toy Run. The toys were used to complete toy requests two hours before families were due to come pick up their toys later that same day. The first 100 families got more than they expected, they also received a turkey and sides for a delicious holiday meal.
“We recognize that the holidays can be a very difficult time for many families needing help,” said Interim Chief of Police Amandro. “Santa Cop and Shop with a Cop would not be possible without the continued support of the business community, organizations, and private citizens. We would like to thank the community for helping us to achieve our mission of protecting our community”
Stuart Attorney Donald Watson wins Florida PAL Volunteer of the Year Award
ORLANDO, FL – On December 15, 2014 Stuart Attorney Donald Watson received the Florida Police Athletic-Activities League Volunteer of the Year Award for his work with the Fort Pierce PAL.
Attorney Watson, a partner with The Law Offices of Gary, Williams, Parenti & Watson, and several members of his family attended the awards luncheon held at Disney’s Yacht Club Resort Conference Center in Lake Buena Vista, FL. In addition to the award, a photo and story of his achievements will be featured in the SFAPAL Illustrated Magazine.
Ten years ago, Attorney Watson became involved with the Fort Pierce PAL after auditioning for a part in a play. Since then, he has contributed countless hours, raised thousands of dollars, and completed a seventh term as vice president of the Board of Directors.
While serving alongside of PAL youth leaders and witnessing first-hand their diligence, Attorney Watson developed the idea to host a PAL Youth Appreciation Luncheon. The first one took place in early 2013 and was sponsored by him. By recognizing the youth for their efforts, Attorney Watson hopes it will encourage them to continue to serve and do well.
“Giving back to my community,” is phrase often used to express a desired goal, but for Attorney Watson it has become a way of life. He continues to further PAL’s goal of “Filling Playgrounds not Prisons”, through his involvement in other charitable events, though they were not directly under the auspices of PAL. Among the many things, he served as a FCAT tutor in 2012 at Resurrection Family Life Worship Center in Fort Pierce; volunteer for Building Bridges in Stuart; master of ceremonies of the Arnold Stanberry Community Achievers’’ Award program highlighting achievements of historical figures and community servants in Martin County and a motivational speaker for pre-school and school-aged students.
For nearly two decades, Fort Pierce PAL has provided a host of intervention, prevention, and alternative programs for at risk and economically challenged youth in our community. The Fort Pierce PAL accepts donations year round. If you would like to show your support, donations can be sent to the PAL Center, 903 S 21st Street, Fort Pierce, FL 34950, or you can volunteer by contacting 772-466-0606.