It’s the time of year to spread holiday joy, but some children don’t have the opportunities to have a true Christmas experience. To remedy this issue, some Lower Bucks police departments are teaming up for “Shop With A Cop.”
Each officer is paired with one child. Donations from the community fund a Christmas shopping spree. They can get any presents within a financial limit for their families and themselves.
“We have right now 40 kids through 28 families. We recognize some of the names through tragedy,” Deppi said. “In talking with these families, they’re very excited and happy to be a part of this event.”
Last year, Officer Deppi had the opportunity to help the Quakertown Police with their Shop With a Cop event. He was paired with three children and says he will never forget one girl who only wanted a bike.
A girl named Brooklyn insisted on getting a bike even though she clearly didn’t have enough money. Deppi realized there must have been more to the story and asked a judge with the local court.
“Her dad sold her bike the day after Christmas for drugs,” Deppi recalled the judge saying. “I went up to her and I said, ‘Sweetheart what color bike do you want, do you want streamers and do you want a matching helmet.'”
The occasion gives officers a chance to gain insight into the most vulnerable members of the community. Police hope the event gives the children the opportunity to see their local officers in a light not often portrayed on television.
Funds are totally raised through community donations and children are given $150.00 to buy presents. The children for this year’s program are elementary students from the Council Rock School District and St. Andrews Elementary School.
Middletown, Lower Southampton, and Newtown Township Police are all gearing up for the event at the Langhorne Target on December 2nd. It is Newtown’s first time participating in “Shop With A Cop” as a department and the other stations will guide them through the process.
Anyone looking to donate can mail a check made out to “Middletown Community Foundation.” The memo line should read “SWAC/Newtown Twp” or “Shop with a Cop/Newtown Twp.”
The final check should be mailed to:
Middletown Township Police Department, Attn: Melissa Robison 5 Municipal Way Langhorne, PA 19047