GOOSE CREEK—Immaculate Conception Church held a safety fair for children Aug. 22 that taught important lessons about protecting oneself and helping others.
The children who attended were excited about all the information, prizes and giveaways at the different booths. Youth were particularly drawn to the U.S. Coast Guard station, which had an interactive display to teach the fatal danger of not wearing a life jacket. Even more enticing to some was Special Officer Myrtle, the station’s canine mascot who modeled the proper water gear for dogs.
Children also lined up to have their fingerprints taken by a group of Charleston County Sheriff’s Office Explorers.
“We try to build a connection with the other kids, talk to them about what they like to do, what they want to do in life,” said Glayverth Silva, 16. He said they try to help youth understand that cops are good people who are working to keep them safe.
Kevin Scott reiterated that same message at his booth. Scott, a retired K-9 officer who now works with the Goose Creek Police Department’s Neighborhood Watch, advises parents: never tell your children that policemen will lock them up if they’re bad.
“Police don’t lock up kids,” Scott said. “We want them to know the policeman isn’t a bad, scary person. They’re here to help.”
Preston Gorence, 10, said one of the best things girls and boys can do to help protect themselves is to learn self defense. Preston was one of the students from the Coastal Kenpo Karate and Martial Arts center who demonstrated escape and defense techniques.
Other methods of protection were highlighted by a video from Dignity Memorial Escape School.
Highlights from the video include:
The event was sponsored by the Sons of Italy Lodge No. 2842 and collected toiletry items for Helping Hands of Goose Creek.
“They are a fantastic, tremendous organization,” said Tom Karabees, lodge president. “The one thing they don’t have, and people can’t get with food stamps, is personal hygiene items.”
By the end of the day, the group had collected a pile of toothbrushes, toothpaste, mouthwash, deodorant and more.