The Samuel Lee Toney Foundation (SLTF) is a 501(c)(3) organization that uses police to mentor young people. SLTF was established in 2015 as a tribute to Lieutenant Sam Toney of the Florence Police Department in South Carolina. Lt. Toney committed 39 years of his life to a profession in law enforcement and made use of his platform to share his enthusiasm for educating and molding our children into better adults. As a nonprofit, our goal is to assist our youngsters grow positively by providing them with law enforcement officers' mentoring, just like Lt. Toney did during his time in that position. We seek to offer access to excellent personal and long-lasting relationships with law enforcement, educational scholarships and chances, and possibilities for character development.
Grow. Inspire. Change.
When he passed away at the age of 64 from natural causes, his career as a Lieutenant came to an end while he was on duty. He had not yet retired because he was so passionate about his work. He excelled far above what was required of him by his job description because he loved to serve, protect, and bring about positive change. He was a man who was completely devoted to his vocation out of a pure desire to assist others.
One of his most significant initiatives, Camp Fever, catered to young people in Florence and the surrounding areas who lacked moral guidance and adult role models. The goal of this program is to instill in young people the values of morality, respect, and building positive relationships with both law enforcement and other people. In honor of my father, we have vowed to continue helping juvenile issues and assisting those who choose to pursue careers in criminal justice or entrepreneurship.
From Our Founder, Samantha K. Toney
"I am excited about this Foundation being the raw example of my dad's heart for helping people. My ideas for where I'd like to take this organization are different-- they're a bit out of the box. However, my dad thought out of the box when he figured he'd round up about 40 police officers on his squad and take them out in the woods to go camping with a bunch of kids that were a little rough around the edges. No internet. No cell phones for the kids. No electronic games. No hot water. He wanted officers knee cap-to-knee cap with them, in the same kayaks with them, playing the same games, eating the same camp food. Sleeping in their cars while the kids slept in their protective view. He wanted full-on bonding and building trustworthy relationships. I want to encompass that, and take it to a whole new level."
The 3 Cornerstones of SLT- Morals, Education & Professionalism
The SLT Foundation supports the professional development of our socioeconomically disadvantaged youngsters by identifying their skills and fostering their development into well-known career professionals, prosperous citizens, and change-makers.
"Be the change you wish to see"
"Knowledge isn't power...the application of knowledge is power."
"Your smile is your logo, your personality is your business card, how you leave others feeling becomes your trademark."
What's Our M.O.?
Samantha feels as though the torch has been passed as she builds on her father's ideas. She has ambitious intentions to expand the foundation and have a significant national effect. The goal is to identify young people with high potential in less-than-perfect circumstances and give them the opportunities and encouragement they need to realize their potential. Samantha wants to encourage the development of this link between young people and law enforcement officials after seeing personally how some teenagers called her father before making certain decisions.
“Most of these kids don’t have someone that’s present in their lives…someone that is consistent… A good example. What a plot twist…! Why not let that person be an officer? In order for that to happen, we as officers need to humanize ourselves a little more to connect with them. That connection, plus opportunities for conversation….and a little food, haha…has more power and positive influence than a single arrest ever will.”
"Our badge represents known power, but our character behind it is the true influence."