STOCKBRIDGE — A local police chief and his fraternity are working to deter young men from crime through mentoring and by awarding college scholarships.
Riverdale Public Safety Director and Police Chief Samuel Patterson along with his fraternity Kappa Alpha Psi (Decatur alumni) held a bowling competition fundraiser for the youngsters.
The “King Pin Bowling Tournament” raised an estimated $7,500. The bowling tournament was held Sunday at Pin Strikes Entertainment Center, located at 3478 Mount Zion Road, in Stockbridge.
The bowling center was packed as various bowling leagues battled against each other to raise money for Guiderite, and Kappa League. Guiderite is a national service program. Kappa League is a male youth mentoring/leadership program, which falls under the umbrella of Guiderite. Guiderite’s mission statement is, Grooming today’s youth to be tomorrow’s leader. The young men range in ages from 12 to 17.
“We are trying to make a difference in these young boys’ lives,” Patterson said. “We’re trying to set an example for these young men. We want them to see different role models, other than entertainers and sports figures. Education is the key to lifting themselves out of their current circumstances. Our young boys need to see positive role models.”
The Decatur alumni chapter of the fraternity includes a variety of professionals, ranging from heads of law enforcement, chief executive officers, vice presidents and senior management of major corporations.
“It is good for them to see President Obama and Colin Powell, but they are so far removed from reality for the boys,” Patterson added. “It is good for them to see role models on a local level.”
The alumni Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity gave academic scholarships and $100 giftcards on Nov. 24 to 20 students, who maintained a 3.5 and above grade-point averages while in high school. Some of the recipients maintained a 4.0 GPA during high school, according to Patterson. He said the unique circumstances surrounding these students were that their families faced economic disadvantages.
Those students participate in the alumni fraternity’s Students Educational Excellence Development (SEED) program.
“Our fraternity’s seed program is designed to identify through relationship, resources for the children who find themselves facing, but overcoming social and economic barriers,” Patterson added.
Grainger Vice President of Corporate and Major Accounts Michael J. Dubose serves as the national committee chairman for the grand chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi and is a member of the Decatur alumni chapter. Dubose said his chapter is partnering with DeKalb County to support the fraternity’s Community Achievement Center.
“This fundraiser supports our community initiatives,” Dubose said. “Most of that money will go toward programs that our fraternity supports, such as Kappa League, and we donate food to needy families during the holidays.”
One of the many people on hand to help for the event was Demetra D. Abraham.
“Any opportunity I have to come out and support a charity like this, is important to me to do it,” she said. “Because our youth are our future leaders.”