Police seek divine intervention in Clarendon
The Errol Rattray Evangelistic Association (EREA) has partnered with the May Pen Minister's Fraternal and the Ministry of National Security to launch Operation Hope in Clarendon.
The crime prevention initiative, which was launched at the Grace Baptist Church in May Pen on Sunday will see activities officially kicking off in June.
The programme will be seeking to promote "the God factor" in dealing with some of Clarendon's troubled communities.
Eight areas have been targeted: Bucknor, Bucks Common, Free Town, Sandy Bay, Juno Crescent, Canaan Heights, Effortville and Farm.
"Every Saturday, there will be community engagements. Through prayer and mentoring we will be seeking to guide the youths and there will also be a major open air meeting," said the association's head, Errol Rattray.
Three schools in each of the eight areas will also be targeted for intervention activities from the team.
Assistant Commissioner of Police Donovan Graham in expressing confidence in the mission predicted that Clarendon would see a decrease in murders. Clarendon has the second highest murder rate in the island with the figure as of Sunday standing at 57 - 13 more than last year.
Having already seen the positive impact Operation Hope had on the Nannyville community in Kingston at a time when it was "under lock down", Senior Superintendent of Police Fitz Bailey invited Rattray to Clarendon.
"We need divine intervention. The church is equipped to do that," said Bailey.