By Savannah Brock
The job of a sergeant doesn’t typically include being surrounded by kids. However, for Jackson County Sheriff Sergeant Cindy O’Barr, it’s a daily occurrence.
“I love kids. Kids are just the most amazing things to me,” says Sgt. O’Barr. “What we do makes such an impression on them that we want to get in there with them early, and that’s why we decided to do the CHAMPS program.”
CHAMPS stands for Choosing Healthy Activities and Methods Promoting Safety and for the last year and a half Sgt. O’Barr has dedicated her time to teaching the fifth graders of Jackson County some important life lessons. Her lessons include topics like alcohol and substance abuse, bullying and firearm safety.
“Working with Sgt. O’Barr is about as easy as it could be,” says Jackson County Sheriff Deputy Scott Frazier. “Me and the other officers have talked and if she ever left we don’t know if we could continue on with the program.”
Deputy Frazier helps teach the CHAMPS classes along with Sgt. O’Barr. They both enjoy getting to know the kids and teach them important life lessons in and out of the classroom.
“You can help the children, but when the children are coming back and telling you they’re helping their parents, that’s amazing,” says Sgt. O’Barr. “It makes you feel like you’ve done something, you’ve helped somebody. You may even save a life.”
In the end, that is Sgt. O’Barr’s biggest goal.
Sgt. O’Barr is excited to see these Jackson County fifth graders finish the 12-week program. Their graduation will be in the beginning of December.