CORINTH – The federal program known as Weed and Seed, which put additional police patrols and a substation in the south Corinth community, ended on Oct. 1.
However, police Chief David Lancaster said the department plans to continue an increased presence in the neighborhood to maintain the gains he feels they have made there.
“Having an officer who can interact with people in the community and that they feel comfortable talking to has made a difference for us,” the chief said.
Over a four-year period, the South Corinth Neighborhood Project brought almost $900,000 into the community through the U.S. Justice Department Weed and Seed grant program, funding two Community-Oriented Policing officers and after-school safe havens at four sites: Project Attention, the Lighthouse Foundation, the Corinth Boys & Girls Club and the Northeast Mississippi Business Incubator.
The after-school sites provided enrichment programs and tutoring as well as community service projects to help refurbish the neighborhood.
The police officers also helped community residents establish Neighborhood Watch programs in Ward 4.
Project Director Barbara Bennett’s job ended at the conclusion of the grant, but she has been hired by the Corinth Police Department for further grant-writing projects and as a public information officer.
“The Weed and Seed grant was not an easy one to get, and I applaud Barbara who worked really hard to acquire it for us,” Lancaster said. “I know there are many more grants out there that we might qualify for, and she will be a tremendous asset as we seek out more funding sources.”
Contact Lena Mitchell at (662) 287-9822 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lena Mitchell/NEMS Daily Journal