One of a Police Officer’s greatest rewards might surprise you. It is a note from a child. 

During our last year’s Police Week efforts in my hometown, I put out the request for notes and pictures from children. Several classrooms participated and the bundle of cards I picked up from schools would have heartened your own spirit for America. I concluded, after reviewing them before handing them off, that instead of listening to the media we need to listen to children.

The loud voices in the public square like to try and carry the day with arguments that Law Enforcement should be defunded, that Law Enforcement are too aggressive, that Law Enforcement aren’t really needed. After reviewing the notes from children I realized, that sometimes adults just make things too complicated.

These children thoughtfully drew pictures and in their precious maturing handiwork wrote sentiments like, “I feel safer when you are here,” and “Thank you for keeping us safe” and “you are courageous” and “I want to be a Police Officer” or “thank you for the sacrifices you make for us.”

I knew that children’s notes were gold but reviewing these took my breath away. The heart of a child is what we in America need to be listening to a little more.

Passing off bundles of these cards to Officers in different departments was like handing off the Olympic torch. A holy grail. A nugget of hope. A precious commodity. They were delighted with even a few precious notes.

To an Officer, at times they simply need to be reminded that what they are doing, the evil they are encountering, the tedious details they are enduring matters. There is something deeply moving in the conveying of sentiments from a child. In the heart of innocence, and even “life lived” at a young age, (and some of more experience of adult things than I will ever know), they are able to convey inspiration and hope to an Officer like no one else can.

Through the eyes of a child, Police Officers are reminded why they began this profession. A child’s gratitude and encouragement to them is a stronger clarion call than the loudmouths of the media or politicians trying to take away their resources. That a child feels safer because they are around, that a child looks up to them, that a child needs them is enough to spur them forward.

If you want to demonstrate love to your community’s Law Enforcement, have families mail thank you notes from their children of any age to a Police Station. Or better yet stop by with your child to let them meet the Officers face to face, say hi to the K9 Officer, get a peek inside a Police car, and hand them the note in person. Your child will have just handed this Officer a priceless treasure.

Know that when our children in America draw a picture and write a note for an Officer at any time of the year you are breathing life into the weary heart and soul of a hero. They will run a little faster and stand a little straighter in the next rush of danger because they are reminded that if a child sees them as a hero they can do anything.

                                                                Amy J. Hawkins

Chair and Founder of Police Week Michigan

Police Week Michigan Website

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