Muscogee County middle school students are learning the importance of leadership and community service through the Muscogee County Marshal’s Office.

The mentorship program aims to build leaders and in turn, may be curbing crime.

The 2018 class of Junior Marshals met for the first time this year the Government Center Saturday morning. 

They were introduced to “CLEFT”- Citizenship, Leadership, Education, Fun, and Teamwork. 

Those are the core values of the Junior Marshals.

“At this day and time with our community we need more law enforcement involvement but this program is not geared at us talking about law enforcement it’s geared toward us coming together as a team so we want them to know that we are there to support them,” says Corporal Ezekiel Byrd. 

Marshal Greg Countryman started the program in 2005.

Since its inception, Marshal Countryman reports that no Junior Marshals have ever been involved with drugs or gang activity.

“Havinga junior marshal anchor with good people, positive people,and that impacts their friends because they can send that message across the board so it’s not just impacting them, it’s impacting who they are connecting with,” says Cpl. Byrd.

Students who sign up spend two years planning service projects within their schools and communities.

“it’s not just a self thing they are focusing on their self.. they’re focusing on other people and I think that’s what people and more and more groups need to do they need to focus on other people not on their self,” says Jamison Baker.

 The positive role models encourage the students to pursue their dreams.