Through Shop with a Cop program, Prairie Village police and area organizations make holidays happy for 10 kids

Officer Adam Taylor helps a participant select toys through the Shop with a Cop program.
Cpl. Adam Taylor helps a participant select toys through the Shop with a Cop program.

For the fifth year in a row, the Prairie Village Police Department and the Prairie Village Foundation have teamed up to make the holidays a little happier for some disadvantaged kids.

Last Thursday, officers helped 10 local children pick out some Christmas gifts for themselves and their families. With help from the foundation, the officers were able to provide each child with a shopping budget of $175, with the Mission Target — where the shopping trip took place — kicking in funds to cover the sales tax.

It’s an event that has become a highlight for the officers, who get to help the kids navigate their way through the store, said Chief Tim Schwartzkopf, who noted the generosity the kids tend to display.

“Sometimes we’ve had instances where kids buy strictly for their parents or siblings,” he said.

The day culminates with a pizza party at the police station, where volunteers from city staff and the foundation help wrap the gifts while the kids socialize with the officers.

The shopping budget as well as other gifts for the participants were provided through contributions from the following organizations: Target Greatland; Mely’s Yogurt & Ice Cream; Goodcents Deli Fresh Subs; Minsky’s Pizza Prairie Village; GINIA; Notes to Self, LLC; Planet Sub Prairie Village; The Learning Tree; Hy-Vee Prairie Village; The Bank of Prairie Village; Prairie Village Dentists-Drs. Grant Smith & J. Anthony Hockett; Prairie Village Merchants Association; Prairie Village Municipal Foundation; Prairie Village Police Department; City of Prairie Village; Tiffany Town; and Bijin Salon & Day Spa, among others.

Schwartzkopf noted that this year the group was able to provide some winter clothing and backpacks for the kids as well.