June 18, 2014
-- As the wife of a police sergeant in Southern California, Rose Winick found herself in need of advice and support she could only get from other police wives. She decided to form her own support system by starting an online forum in 2006. That forum quickly grew to over 200 members from across the nation, Canada, England and Australia. Over the years, Wives Behind the Badge received numerous requests for financial support and other resources from police families and law enforcement agencies. Rose and her all-volunteer staff were called into action and Wives Behind the Badge became a non-profit organization dedicated to helping police families across the country.
At this time, WBTB serves law enforcement families and the law enforcement community in nearly all fifty states through its Auxiliary program. In addition, the organization has grown to provide several programs, including H.A.L.O.S. (Helping Aid Lost Officers’ Survivors), which provides a one-on-one companion to the surviving spouse or loved one in the event of a line of duty death or injury. Blue Line Kids, was officially launched this spring with programs for kids birth – 21 including a pen pal program, fundraisers and a first-of-its kind “Excellence Program” that couples fun learning topics with community service. Additionally, the organization is in the process of moving forward on growing its K.A.R.E. (K9 Assistance Resource Education) program to assist retired K9s and their families. The BLK HALOS Quilts program supplies handmade blankets to children of fallen officers and WBTB is proud to report that every child who has lost a parent in 2014 has been gifted a blanket made with love, tears and support.
On Saturday, June 7, 2014, two Las Vegas police officers were murdered while eating lunch. In response, a volunteer staff member in Ohio quickly created a campaign on Facebook - “#stoptheviolence”
, which shared photographic moments captured by our law enforcement families and in Illinois, a similar campaign launched “#humanizingourheroes”
, followed by “#notjustacop”
in Maryland. At the national level, WBTB quickly focused on launching the program through all of its Auxiliaries and in less than twenty four hours, received hundreds of photos from LE families wanting to share their cherished moments with tag lines such as “so he can walk me down the aisle” and “so we can make more memories like these”.
To date, countless photos have been received, made into beautiful graphics that are posted on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. The campaign has soared to unimaginable levels as a loving reminder that the men and women in uniform, sworn to protect our streets are far more than police officers. They are husbands, fathers, mothers, daughters, sisters, brothers and more. Juli McCoy, Director of Marketing and Public Affairs shared that “it is our hope that through this simple campaign, we make an impact on our nation to stop the violence and hatred toward our peace officers – those who were called to lay their lives on the line each and every day and run toward the danger – it must cease.”
“We have an incredible team of talented women who have dedicated countless hours to continuing the momentum of this campaign and I thank them for that,” shared President Tabitha Youngstrom. For more information, please visit the Wives Behind the Badge, Inc. Facebook page or email firstname.lastname@example.org
. #stoptheviolence #notjustacop #morethanabadge #humanizingourheroes #WBTB @WBTBPoliceWives