N.C. Department of Correction--Correction News--September 1997

Durham DAPP Officers in the kitchen

Durham - Itís two oíclock in the afternoon and DAPP officers are probably in the last place their probationers would expect to find them.

On this day, officers are in the homeless shelter cooking dinner for more than a hundred people, many of whom are their clients. The officers collected donated food from area businesses and decided to do the cooking and serving themselves. On the menu are baked chicken, green beans, pinto beans, biscuits, and fresh fruit.

Passing by the kitchen, it sounds as if the cooks are running a well-organized operation. "Whereís the aluminum foil?" one officer asks. "Use the box thatís already open," another responds. On the other side of the kitchen, officers open an oven door to check on another dish. "What did you put in here?" asks one officer as he smiles approvingly. "I canít tell you everything," another officer answers with a big grin, "but itíll be right."

Valee Taylor keeps a close check on the food that he and other DAPP officers prepared for Durham homeless shelter residents.

"We wanted to let the people we supervise see another side of us," said Valee Taylor, chief probation and parole officer. "We canít sit up in our air-conditioned offices and look down at these folks. We like to get out in the community and get involved." The probation and parole officer is only a couple of blocks away from the homeless shelter.

Although Taylor was the mastermind behind the event, he said that other Durham units pitched in with time and money.

"Weíll continue our community service projects," Taylor said. "Weíll always try to do something for the community. Taylor mentioned that a future project may involve a program helping people to understand how to successfully complete their probation and parole sentence.

NC DOC Correction News- September 1997
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