GULFPORT, FL. – Through the Kennek Foundation, the Gulfport Police Department announced a new community program – “Trouble on the Scene” that will bring hope and comfort to children experiencing traumatic situations in Gulfport.
Trouble the Dog is an oversized, keepsake plush known to calm and comfort children affected by trauma. The Trouble on the Scene program ensures that police officers and first responders have a resource available to help provide immediate comfort to children in times of crisis.
The Kennek Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization formed to provide comfort and hope to those most in need – leaving plush toy dogs behind as a coping mechanism for children to keep as they heal. A new ally for the community, Trouble the Dog has been applauded by CNN and MSNBC as a “therapy dog” and “socially conscious comfort toy” for children.
It started with a phone call to Gulfport PD between Kennek founder, Sheila Duncan from Boston, Massachusetts, and Chief Vincent’s Administrative Assistant, Gail Biron, and it took off from there. Ms. Duncan revealed the department donor, Rod Kreimeyer, and Jon Sherril who winters in Florida.
Kreimeyer represents the Masonic Low Twelve Riders Sons of Hiram Chapter St. Petersburg and Tony Mangiafico of the St. Pete Fools (local businessman’s association) which will be delivering the first Twenty Five “Trouble” the dogs to the Gulfport Police Department on May 2nd.
“This was a no-brainer for me. In crisis situations, children oftentimes do not have people they can relate to. If Trouble the Dog can help fill a potential void, or even open the door to healing, interpersonal contact, then I am all for it” said police chief, Robert Vincent.