Area law enforcement officers helped spread holiday cheer Tuesday night during the annual Shop with a Cop event.
What it is: Shop with a Cop involves area police and tribal officers, along with sheriff's deputies, pairing up with children for a night of Christmas shopping.
Who it helps: This year, 57 children, many who are affiliated with Hope House, Project Safe, Shawnee Rescue Mission or Family Promise of Shawnee, participated.
How it's funded: A fundraiser spearheaded by Ball Pipe and Supply, including donations from the community and its businesses, resulted in $5,700 being raised — enough to send 57 children shopping with an officer. The program served 45 children in 2011. Bill Staggs, general manager of Ball Pipe and Supply, said they had many new donors this year and said "It was an overall community effort."
How it works: Children are paired up with officers or deputies, with each child receiving a $100 gift card to spend on clothing, shoes, toys and others items of their choosing. The event is often as much for the officers as it is for the children.
Where: The Shop with a Cop event was held Tuesday evening at Walmart. "What a great program," Store Manager Chris Nelson said.