Myrtle Beach Police Officer gives back - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Myrtle Beach Police Officer gives back

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Our police officers are out in the community, every single day, to keep us safe, but for them, their job, goes beyond that.

An officer is going beyond his duties here in Myrtle Beach, doing a good deed for local kids.

The man behind the badge is Myrtle Beach Police Officer Mike Dame. He served in the military, has been in the police force for nearly 20 years, and is spending spare time teaching art to our youth.

Every Friday, he opens up a classroom at the Historic Myrtle Beach Colored School Museum and Education Center, which opens up a door for these kids, to explore their creative sides.

The art project the kids are working on is a surprise that will be revealed during National Night Out which is the beginning of August.

He brings in other officers, each week, to teach the kids about the K9 Unit, Patrol Cars, and really give them an inside look into the police force. It's a chance to show these kids, who learn about police from what they see on TV, there's much more behind the badge.

“It's really good for them to go, okay these are real people and I can touch them, talk to them, ask them questions about what they do. It just makes it real for them,” Officer Dame said. “Some of them even said, I like to be a police officer when I grow up.”

The Myrtle Beach Police Department says it's philosophy is "community policing." They believe, working together with you, is the key to a safe and successful city.

Their efforts can be as simple as making baskets for the elderly, or hosting big events like the annual Golf Tournament which provides scholarships.

A big focus is serving as role models to our youth. That's why they continue "Shop with a Cop," and the softball game for Project Lifesaver.

This year, for the first time, the police and fire departments recently held the first, Blue Lights, Red Stripes, football game, with the Boys and Girls Club.

Some officers also do individual mentoring, throughout the year, checking in on community kids, they befriend.

“You can’t get enough community interaction with these kids, and any chance we get to reach out and do anything with, especially the young people in the community, it's priceless,” Dame said.

Our Police Department as a whole, will continue to push is the Neighborhood Watch Groups and the Citizens Police Academy, which are both ways, you the citizens, can work face-to-face, with out police.

Another continued effort is the Community Ambassador program, which launched, this year.

Community Ambassadors are volunteers that assist at various functions, like the Carolina Country Music Fest. They serve as a friendly face, providing guests with directions or any information they'd need for an event.

They first served during Memorial Day Weekend and the next time they will volunteer will be for events at the sports complex and national night out.

Since its launch, there have been more than 100 trained ambassadors.  

The next few months will be busy for the ambassadors and the city is always looking for more.

If you want to get involved, contact Krystal Dotson at 843-918-1976.

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