INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - When you were a kid, you probably lived for Christmas morning when you could run to the tree and tear open everything with your name on it (and even some of your siblings' names). Nine children around Indianapolis will have that fond memory thanks to the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and Target.
Saturday morning IMPD officers from the Northwest District took nine children from families in need for a Christmas shopping trip at the Target on West 38th Street. The program is called "Shop with a Cop" and Target allocated $120,000 for the program, nationally.
"Target approached us and said we want give a few kids a chance to have Christmas," said IMPD Sgt. Matthew Grimes. "So we talked with social workers with IPS and Pike Township schools. They found families for us and that started the process."
Sgt. Grimes interviewed parents in each family to understand their holiday needs.
"Some of these kids didn't have snow boots, pants that fit, or even socks. So, we're starting with the necessary items, first. If they have money leftover, we'll go over and buy some toys, too."
For the chosen kids, the day started off in a big way. Officers picked up each one in a squad car to drive to Target.
Together they shopped one-on-one and had a Target employee to help them around the store.
"They were having a blast. Before we even got into the store they were already like 'this is great, this is great' and we hadn't even shopped yet," said Officer Nicolle Freeman, She's a school liaison officer who works with kids on a daily basis.
"They've been very excited. They're running all over the store grabbing things off the shelves," said Freeman.
Target apportioned $1,250 for Indianapolis kids. IMPD officers in the Northwest District pitched in about $200 so that each of the nine kids could have $150 to themselves.
"The biggest challenge is just keeping up with the kids," said Officer Rick Jones with a big laugh. "The child I'm shopping with, J.J., just keeps throwing things in the cart and I have to say ‘no buddy, we don't have money for that.' But it's a lot of fun!"
Indianapolis is one of 60 communities, nationwide, where Target gave grants. This is the first year Target sponsored Shop with a Cop in Indianapolis.
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