Not even the Christmas Grinches carrying on with their doom and gloom and mandates and insisting police officers are the next coming of the Nazis or the KKK were able to crush the Christmas spirit for cops and kids across the country this month.
Even in New York, which is among the top five most mandated states in the country, cops in Niagara Falls continued the annual tradition of treating local children to a $100 shopping spree where they were free to buy gifts for themselves or others.
Hundreds of kids across the country accompanied local law enforcement officers to stores for some holiday cheer and the experiences of buying gifts.
States including Ohio, North Carolina and Wyoming joined with New York and other participating states to spread some Christmas joy.
Deputy Michael Hawsman of Ohio’s Summit County Sheriff’s Office told his local news channel that…
Watching the kids’ eyes get twice as big as they pull in and go shopping that’s what we’re here for.
The opportunity to connect with local children and be a part of an experience that makes such an enormous positive impression on them is a highlight of the job. With so much stress and burnout in police departments across the country, it is more important now to double down on moments like this.
The country was still largely locked down last year, so kids could not accompany police officers on shopping sprees. It could have been a major disappointment for everyone. But the Christmas spirit prevailed even then, with officers picking up shopping lists from the kids, running out to get the gifts themselves, and even wrapping them all before delivering straight to that child’s home.
If you’ve ever faced Christmas with fear and sadness or stress, you will have an extra appreciation for the impact these shopping sprees have. They may involve physical presents, wrapped in pretty paper, but the real gifts being given are gratitude, generosity, and love.