After funding from another organization fell through, the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff's Office stepped in to see that some local children did not go without gifts this holiday season.
Sheriff's Office employees have committed to sponsoring approximately 65 children for the "Shop With a Cop" program. The children were all referred to the Sheriff's office by the Youth Service Bureau.
This Saturday, deputies will serve the children a pancake breakfast at the Sheriff's Administrative Building in Slidell. Santa and his elves – along with a few Sheriff's office K-9's decked out in holiday gear – will be present to visit with the children at the breakfast.
After the breakfast, each child will be given $100 for a shopping spree at a local Wal-Mart store. The children will be allowed to purchase gifts for themselves or for family members. A uniformed Sheriff's deputy will accompany each child while he or she shops. The program provides an opportunity for positive interaction between these children and local law enforcement.
The Youth Service Bureau provides advocacy, counseling, education and intervention for at-risk youth and their families. The St. Tammany Parish Sheriff's Office wanted to ensure that these children, who range age from infant to 17 years old, enjoy a special Christmas this year with lots of love and attention.
Sheriff's office employees, the St. Tammany Deputy Sheriff's Association, members of the local business community and the Covington Criminal Defense Bar Association donated the funding to make this event possible. Additionally, the deputies are donating their time on Saturday for the shopping spree.
Sunrise on Second, the Creole Bagelry, Not Just Donuts and Chick-Fil-A have all donated food for the breakfast.