About 50 uniformed officers out of Ventura County, California, recently helped make some kids’ Christmas a little brighter by playing Santa for a day.
Dep. Mario Molina, who organizes the Shop with a Cop event, explained that the 700 or so deputies from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office make note throughout the year of kids in their communities who “might not be in the best situations.” Some children are also referred to the program by school districts and Boys & Girls Clubs.
Through fundraiser efforts, the Ventura County Sheriff’s Foundation then provides each of those children a $100 gift card and a cop to shop with. This year, 65 kids were treated to an early Christmas at a Camarillo Target.
“The deputies love doing this,” Molina said. “It’s all volunteer. Everybody is here on their own time because they want to do it.”
“They feel like they’re giving something back to the community, other than just stopping people and telling them they’re doing something bad,” Molina added. “It just gives you that good feeling afterward, you know?”