Buckhannon VIPS release 2019 annual report

The VIPS program hopes to double the number of members from 12 to 24 within the year.
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UPSHUR COUNTY, W.Va (WDTV) -- Buckhannon's Volunteers in Police Service program celebrated its 5th anniversary in October of 2019. The Annual Report released by officials last week reflects not only on the past year, but how the program has grown in the five years since its inception.

Since October of 2014, the VIPS members in Buckhannon have volunteered over 7,500 hours and helped with over 500 events. 3,100 of those hours came in 2019 alone.

"We help out with various activities with the police department. Anything from investigations to traffic control, crowd management for different events. We assist with parade details. That frees up the officers to concentrate on more emergent issues in emergencies, rather than being stuck at an intersection guarding traffic," said Steve Wykoff, the VIPS coordinator for Buckhannon.

Wykoff says his goal for 2020 is to recruit members with goal of having more volunteers than officers in the police station.