This past Christmas was an extra special time for some of our foster girls. They had the privilege of having an intimate dinner with five local police officers and the current Miss Arizona. The special guests came to one of our girls’ homes, brought home-made food, served it, and they ate together as one big family.
After dinner, the police officers hosted a Q&A where they collected anonymous questions from the girls to answer. The hope was to build a relationship through conversation and awareness. This was such an eye-opener for our girls because many of them had such a negative view on law enforcement due to personal experience or what they heard and saw on TV.
Once the compelling Q&A was over, the girls had a chance to decorate their own cookies, which were generously brought and baked by an officers’ daughter. And before the event was over, the officers even distributed gift baggies for the girls with make-up, treats, and various goodies!
Check out what Isaiah (Ohana’s Community Engagement Manager), had to say:
“It was so special to see the officers come out and intentionally sit with our girls and engage even with the ones who hid in the corner. There’s so much hurt and bitterness bottled up it just takes one person to come to them and show some love sometimes in order to change their perspective. Most of our kiddos don’t trust anyone , let alone the Police.. so seeing them laugh, decorate cookies, and make conversation made my heart smile to say the least. My favorite question that one of our girls had asked was “why did you take my parents from me and hurt other people?” This question allowed an officer to apologize on behalf of poor use of authority, but they also used this question to bring better understanding to the girls.”