The leadership of the American Armor Foundation, a Georgia-based 501c3 public charity tasked with a mission to provide body armor to law enforcement officers working in underfunded agencies, is pleased to announce that the Woodbury Police Department has been selected as the recipient of its first large agency grant.
American Armor’s founder, Brandon Perkins, and members of the Board of Directors were on hand at the Woodbury Police Department on Wednesday September 14, 2016 to present seven of the agency’s officers with brand new body armor. Notably, this isn’t replacement body armor. These officers, like thousands of others across the United States, had been performing their duties without it due to a lack of funding.
Perkins, a Police Chief himself, took note of this issue approximately 2 years ago after reading in a RAND study that as many as 200,000 American law enforcement officers work without body armor. “Having always worked for agencies that provided body armor and not actually knowing any officers who didn’t have it, I found that estimate hard to believe, so I conducted my own research. While I cannot substantiate the claim that 200,000 are working without it, I can conservatively affirm that tens of thousands of my fellow officers are, in fact, working without body armor due to a lack of funding.”
Perkins found this unacceptable and decided to make it his mission to do something about it and The American Armor Foundation was born in March 2015. “It takes time to complete all of the legal requirements to form a nonprofit, to develop a solid Board of Directors, and raise the initial funding necessary to get such an organization off the ground. Woodbury PD is the culmination of 18 months of hard work getting this important organization started and we are proud to have them as an important part of our story,” stated Perkins.
American Armor is funded by tax-deductible private and corporate financial donations as well as by participation in several additional fundraising initiatives to include a vehicle donation program. The Foundation’s flagship funding source is its “Monthly Heroes” program in which individuals can automatically donate as little as $3.00 per month to help them purchase body armor. As explained by Perkins, “There is power in numbers, so if we can get 1000 people from across the country to donate $3 a month, we could provide about 80 vests a year. We’d love to see 1000 people commit to $10 a month or more, but we wanted to give supporters an option to fit any budget.”