Deputies Stand in at Daddy-Daughter, Mother-Son Dance
On Friday, March 23, Bonlee School hosted its first Daddy-Daughter, Mother-Son dance. Nearly one hundred K-5 students attended the dance, but not all of them were able to attend with a parent. Chatham County Sheriff’s Office Victim Coordinator Donna Griffith coordinated the event and arranged for deputies to stand in as partners for children whose parent could not attend. The event was intended to give children a safe, fun outlet to relax and create positive family memories, especially in light of current events.
“We wanted families to have a good time together, but we recognize that not all children live with their parents and not all parents are able to take off work to attend a school event,” says Griffith. She called upon her co-workers at the Sheriff’s Office to lend a hand and was met with enthusiasm by Sheriff Mike Roberson.
“It is always our pleasure to support community events, especially when they benefit our youth. It also allows students to interact with deputies and understand that we are people, just like them,” says Sheriff Roberson. “To hear that whole families were in attendance laughing, dancing, and making memories together warms the heart. It doesn’t get much better than that.”
The event was sponsored by the Bonlee Parent Teacher Association (PTA) and raised over $700.00, which will be reinvested in students through other programs and events. Attendees were able to have their picture taken before designing their own keepsake photo frame to take home. Deputies say spending time with the students was the highlight of their week.
“It was a great turn out and felt like something the kids really needed. School dances can feel a little awkward at first, but once the kids saw us out there being silly they knew it was okay for them to jump in,” says Deputy Jonathan Thomas. “I think it also gave parents the courage to let go and join in with us. If a deputy can show their playful side, so can they!”
“This was our first time offering the event, but we hope to make it an annual tradition,” says Griffith. “It gives everyone a chance to forget negativity and focus on family. The community really seemed to embrace it and students are already asking for it to be offered again next year.”
Pictured Left to Right: Chatham County Deputies Jimmy Harris, Carmen Mitchell, Robert Smith, and Jonathan Thomas