Recently, the Tennessee Wildlife Officer's Association helped out by cooking lunch for the Chaplain's Conference that was recently held at Stones River Hunter Education Center. This was a two day conference that provided basic training for Law Enforcement Chaplains and networking opportunities. Chaplains support the LE officer and their families by providing spiritual and emotional guidance, and prayer, which helps build resiliency in the force.
Several states were represented including Tennessee, Maryland, Alabama, South Carolina, Indiana, and Pennsylvania as well as one officer of TWRA.
A lot of citiznes do not know about TWRA's newly formed Chaplain Program:
In 2014, the TWRA formed a chaplain program with primary focus on its commissioned law enforcement officers. While the program focuses on TWRA officers, it also provides services to other TWRA employees, as well as other law enforcement agencies and the public. The chaplains provide spiritual leadership, guidance and support for TWRA officers and others.
Chaplains have been a part of military history since 1775 when they were recognized by the U.S. government and have served in every U.S. war since the American Revolution. Similar to the U.S. military, the TWRA chaplain program is based on three basic tenets: Nurture the living. Care for the wounded. Honor the dead.
This voluntary, faith-based, peer-supported program is designed to provide wildlife officers with an additional option for meeting their emotional and spiritual needs. Wildlife officers are called on to respond to incidents that involve death, victim rescue, victim recovery, or notification of next of kin. They also respond to natural or manmade disasters, which puts them on the front line to see and experience additional stress.
TWRA chaplains build resiliency by preparing the officer for his/her job and by strengthening the officer and his/her family. The chaplains are trained to bring hope and strength to those who have been wounded or traumatized in body, mind or spirit by assisting the healing process. They also participate in memorial ceremonies, services and funerals which place emphasis on the worth and value of the individual. The TWRA chaplain program is another tool to keep our officers safe and fit for duty.
The following write-up is from Sgt. Bill Moulton out of Clay County. The Dale Hollow Kids Fishing Rodeo has grown to be one of the larger events in the state and all of the kids have a blast!
Bill Moulton: We were able to make certain that each child that fished at the 19th Annual Dale Hollow Kids Fishing Rodeo was able to wear a smile , get hands wet n dirty with bait, those that wanted to could meet n get licked by K9 Chip (The Wonderdog!) and leave with a door prize designed to keep them doing something outside. We had well over 400 attendees with nearly 300 kids. With the generous donation from the Tennessee Wildlife Officers Association, we gave out rod/reel combos, tackle boxes, tons of lures,soccer balls , sleeping bags, Lanterns, bait, stringers and more... the two local banks gave out big fish savings bonds, and the Friends of Dale Hollow Fish Hatchery had hot dogs n drinks. The Corp of Engineers had a boating safety booth , the local EMS was on site for snagged fingers and other first aid needs and the Dale Hollow Fish Hatchery workers helped in numerous ways..Andy Currie (Hatchery Manager) and Angie Roach (without whom this wouldnt happen each year), WO Travis Cowan (Clay Co) talked fishing to numerous folks, Sgt Bill Moulton ( Clay Co) drew short straw and had to MC. Numerous Volunteers including Jennifer Cowan, Beth Moulton,Megan Copas (Celina PD) , Pat and Roger Roberts , and too many more to list helped make this years rodeo run smoothly.