National Neighborhood Watch

A Division of the National Sheriffs' Association

Crime prevention through neighborhood cohesiveness and collaboration.


Volunteers In Police Service (VIPS)

The Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) Program works to enhance the capacity of state and local law enforcement to utilize volunteers. VIPS serves as a gateway to resources and information for and about law enforcement volunteer programs. Funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice, VIPS is managed and implemented by the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

The Volunteers in Police Service [VIPS] website provides valuable information on how to start your own volunteer program in your community. They offer: (1) an extensive list of Frequently Asked Question [FAQ], (2) a Database of Volunteers in Police Service programs around the country and; (3) Guides from selected state and local Volunteers in Police Service programs.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is Volunteers in Police Service?

  • Volunteers in Police Service is a locally-driven Citizen Corps program that allows community members to offer their time and talents to their local law enforcement agency. Volunteers in Police Service serves as a gateway to information for and about law enforcement volunteer programs and meets a volunteer's desire to serve as well as an agency's need for support.

What is the Volunteers in Police Service program's relationship to community policing?

  • The Volunteers in Police Service program is a logical outgrowth of the growing trend of community policing initiatives nationwide. Community- or problem-oriented policing programs have built strong bridges between law enforcement agencies and the citizens they serve. A logical expansion of this collaboration is to allow citizens to engage with their local law enforcement agencies to work together even more closely, and enhance policing services.

What are the criteria for inclusion in the Volunteers in Police Service Program?

  • To become part of the Volunteers in Police Service initiative and be included on the website, you must be a state or local law enforcement agency offering volunteer opportunities or an organization working in partnership with a law enforcement agency (such as a Retired Senior Volunteer Program placing volunteers within a law enforcement agency). Your individual program does not have to be called or renamed Volunteers in Police Service .