1,919 criminals bought to justice. 165 missing persons found. Big statistics. Small organization. Justice Coalition.
The Justice Coalition's involvement in bringing about these phenomenal numbers is nothing short of impressive, and it's their apparent tenacity to fight for the rights of the injured that has allowed them to bask in these victories. But only for a brief moment because they can never be satisfied enough to sit back on their laurels. The needs of the perpetual revolving door of victims in the Jacksonville area only make them determined to keep their swords sharpened, sleeves rolled high, ready and able to tackle the aftermath of the most obscene and horrific of crimes.
Their dedication to victims of violent crimes is not surpassed. When the alarm sounds, they run toward the crisis, reaching out into the darkness and grabbing hold of the hands of the hurting, being an unwavering source of light and support as they walk beside them through their waking nightmare. And through it all, the love of Jesus Christ is emanated.
Knowing that they cannot fight this battle alone, the Justice Coalition realizes the value of the church in their endeavors. For instance, there's their Hearts and Hands ministry which invites any church to join that has experienced a murder within a five-mile radius. The Justice Coalition works with them to ensure that once that church is called upon, it's already set-up with an organized program for a victim in need.
Justice Coalition Director Ann Dugger said, 'It's a great opportunity for the church to reach out and help the family, from meal preparation, to home repairs, to witnessing to them about Jesus. The church can minister to these victims in ways that we can't.'
Unfortunately, the Justice Coalition itself has been a victim of crime during this past year. With almost $100,000 embezzled from their agency, they are in dire need of donations. A grass-root, 501(c)3 non-profit organization, you can be assured that your tax-deductible donation is being sown into good soil.
Dugger said, 'The community has a chance to help us. The crime element is large and so is our caseload. There are victims who continue to need us.'
And so do we as a community. If we or a member of our family fall prey to a violent crime, to whom would we want to turn? Who would we want to be by our side, praying and helping us maneuver our way through a process that can be confusing at best, cheering us all along the way?
In the meantime, we can be comforted in knowing that there is someone out there who recognizes the injustices committed against the innocent. We can feel comfort in knowing that this someone will not stop until justice is served. We can feel confident that this someone is doing everything possible to ensure that we have a safer city.