At the August 6 City Council Meeting, The Valdosta Police Department received approval from councilmembers to declare two vehicles surplus to be sold to The Citizens Against Violence Ministry, Inc. for $1 each. The two vehicles available are no longer of value or service and have already been replaced due to age, mileage, or serviceability.
“Citizens Against Violence is such an outstanding organization. They do a lot for our community. We also do a lot of work together to help deter Violence in areas throughout the city. It’s great that we can give some of the resources that we can no longer use to other organizations that can use it,” said Valdosta Police Chief Leslie Manahan.
The city has provided surplus vehicles to local agencies in the past after being granted permission by Council. Recently, Citizens Against Violence approached VPD asking about the possibility of purchasing the two surplus vehicles so that the organization’s citizens patrol can use them to patrol the neighborhoods.
“We have a great partnership and relationship with VPD. We plan to do great things, and these cars will be put to good use. We plan to use these cars with our citizens patrol to patrol the neighborhoods, and the big part about it is that they won’t have to use their own vehicles,” said Rev. J.D. Martin “We plan to dress the cars up and have them on the road as soon as we can.”
Citizens Against Violence was started on October 3, 2015—when two young men were killed in Valdosta, Georgia. Rev. J.D. Martin thought it was time to make a difference and began the organization, working from his home.
In August of 2016, Rev. Martin was allowed to use a building the Housing Authority had to work positive programs created for the community (such as Social Service and SOUL PATROL). In August of 2017, Rev. Martin partnered with the Mail Box Club to institute a Venture Club program, which helps our youth grow spiritually. In May 2017, we were given the use of a larger building that will accommodate 40 of our youth at a time. Our total youth count is 150, and we have an adult staff of ten volunteers (we are currently looking for a larger facility).
The Citizens Against Violence Youth Program is a drug, tobacco, alcohol, and abstinence program, which parents have recognized as one of the most effective programs for our youth. The program stresses the positive role model in the home and community. The child is placed in a positive and controlled environment within our education and recreational activities.
This vehicle contribution will help the organization in its mission and inherently help the city as well. Being able to make an impact like this is hugely significant to the Department and the Chief. “These are surplus vehicles and no longer needed by the city. I believe helping our community partners is a good practice and demonstrates goodwill when we can afford to do so, as in this case,” said Chief Manahan.