Donations Help Area Boys

The Leon County Sheriff's Office is making life-changing contributions to Florida's sheriff's youth ranches, which means a lot to our area boys' ranch.

Florida's sheriff's youth ranches have awarded the Leon County Sheriff's Office the Crystal Star Award, given because of their $250,000-plus in contributions.

Larry Campbell, Leon County Sheriff, says, "Of all the charities that Florida sheriffs are involved in on a day to day basis, this is the primary charity that we support because of the good that we see that it does statewide to the children who, by being deprived, may end up being delinquent."

The youth ranches are voluntary programs that help disadvantaged children. Sitting on 3,600 acres with a farm, church, and learning center, the boys’ ranch in Live Oak is home to 80 boys.

Krel Garvin, a ranch resident, says, "It helps me with responsibility and working without going off and slacking off, just keep working."

The money given to the boys’ ranch provides educational and recreational tools.

The Suwannee County Boys’ Ranch director says while the monetary donations are greatly appreciated, it's the other things that the Leon County Sheriff's Office contributes that are really valuable.

Brad Gregory, the program director, says, "The Sheriff's Office is very supportive. They come out and spend time with the kids to really get them to understand how important it is to abide by the law and what they can do for their futures."

There are eight ranches for boys and girls throughout Florida. Back in the day, Elvis Presley himself visited the boys’ ranch in Live Oak. One of the cottages is named after him.