The Philadelphia Police Explorer Cadet Program got an unexpected boost from Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church last week, when the church donated $5,000 to the program.
"It was something you just don't expect," said Cpl. Bryan Coyle, a Police Department veteran who runs the cadet program. "It's a true blessing because now I can reach out to more kids."
Coyle said the surprise donation from Enon, on Vernon Road and Cheltenham Avenue, was presented to him during a ceremony he attended in which he was honored for his work with community youth.
The donation will help to fund not only the cadet program, in which youth ages 14 to 20 train for careers in law enforcement, but also the Philadelphia Youth Police Camp.
The camp, entering its second year, is for students in grades three through eight interested in becoming police officers.
The camp is held the last two weeks of June and is run, in part, by explorer cadets. It was such a hit last year that the number of campers accepted into the program will go from 135 to 180 this year, Coyle said.
"It's such a good thing to see that there are so many kids out there that want to go into law enforcement," Coyle said.
Cadet and police-camp applications can be found online at ppdexplorers.org.