The Winter Haven Fire Department Chaplaincy Program is a diverse corps of dedicated men and women who offer moral, emotional, and spiritual guidance to Winter Haven Fire members and their families. Chaplains may also serve the citizens of Winter Haven by assisting fire personnel in stressful situations involving serious injury or death.
Fire Department members are often confronted with situations that demoralize and create emotional, mental, and spiritual burdens. These burdens affect the police employees who dealt with the incidents, their families as well as the citizens involved. Fire officers and police employees often need to express their frustration and problems to someone who fully understands the circumstances surrounding their duties, without fear of repercussions.
Chaplain Berry is the director of The Mission here in Winter Haven. The Mission serves those who are less fortunate offering food, clothing, and resources to help get them back on their feet. The Winter Haven Police Department enjoys a great relationship with The Mission and regularly assists in serving lunch.
Pastor Dollison, the Winter Haven Police Senior Chaplain, is a graduate of Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana, and the Baptist Theological Seminary of Indianapolis. He has been pastor of First Missionary Baptist Church in Winter Haven since March 1992. He was formerly a pastor with the Prince of Peace Missionary Baptist Church in Terre Haute, Indiana. Pastor Dollison has been a chaplain with the department since 1998 when the program was first instituted.
Pastor Pounds, a native Floridian, graduated from Florida A&M with a Bachelor's degree in Sociology in 1987. He then enrolled at Harding University working in the graduate degree program towards a Master's degree of Divinity. Pastor Pounds has been the pastor of Hilltop Church of Christ in Winter Haven since June 2006. Prior to this, he was a minister at the Westside Church of Christ in Rockford, Illinois.