Worship with Me

Worship with Me

Worship with Me is a Leon County Sheriff’s Office initiative to connect local, at-risk youth with places of worship, to form a meaningful and impactful mentorship experience. This is a social-science and data driven project. Data shows that religion matters in the lives of our kids. Research has proven that youth, who attend at least one worship experience weekly, significantly decrease their chances of illegal activity and significantly increases their chances of academic success. This program does not focus on a specific religion or a specific type of activity. The purpose is to inform citizens of the powerful and positive impact of worship for youth.

Goals:
    Reduce violence in Leon County through prevention
    Create a lasting bond between at risk youth and places of worship
    Increase the probability of a successful future for at risk youth
    Inform the community of the positive impact that just one hour of worship can have on youth in our community

Objectives:
    Convene a group of community representatives to include religious experts and social workers to identify 7 pilot places of worship to participate in the program April 30, 2019
    Identify at risk youth to participate in initiative May 15, 2019
    Notify places of worship and request a commitment to adopt up to two youth as mentees May 31, 2019
    Places of worship commit to providing a weekly worship experience (at least one hour) for each youth June 4, 2019
    Track youth’s worship experience as well as behavioral patterns, academically and socially and share outcomes with the community via traditional and social media at the 90 day and one year marks September 4, 2019 and June 4, 2020
    Encourage at least 45 additional places of worship to adopt youth for Worship with Me September 4, 2019 through June 4, 2020

Criteria for Places of Worship:
    Encourage and assist youth and their families in getting to worship at least one hour each week
    Establish a liaison(s) (background check approved) for the youth and their family
    Offer transportation assistance for the youth and their family, if necessary
    Provide counseling services as needed

Religiosity Resources

For more information, contact LCSO Executive Director of Community and Media Relations Shonda Knight at knights@leoncountyfl.gov or (850) 606-3270.

LCSO Chaplains

Andy Dawson

Reverend Andy Dawson


Department of Law Enforcement

Father Gene Strickland

Father Gene Strickland


Department of Law Enforcement

Dennis Walker

Reverend Dennis Walker


Department of Law Enforcement