Shop with a Cop was started back in 2000 with the purpose of promoting positive relationships between area children and local police officers. Each year, young kids from kindergarten to sixth grade, are selected to shop for gifts for members of their immediate family. Each child is given a pre-determined amount of money to spend depending on the size of their family. One to two children are assigned to each officer, who then escorts them around the store and helps them pick out the perfect gift for their parents and siblings. The children are told the money is not for personal use but to be spent on their relatives. After shopping, the children spend more time getting to know the police officers as they wrap their gifts.
260 kids from Lexington were chosen to participate in Shop with a Cop this year. All 37 elementary schools in the county were given five spots each. The rest of the referrals came from Lexington Police Officers who chose kids they have made contact with on a call or they have some type of relationship with through local programs like Big Brothers, Big Sisters.
Each child received an admission ticket and their scheduled time to shop at Meijer. Upon arrival, an officer greeted each child and then walked around the store to help them pick out gifts for their families. “The Lexington Police Department has so many wonderful people on board for this amazing event, that benefits numerous children who otherwise may not have much under their trees this year,” said Kristyn Klingshirn, Lexington Police Department.
This year, HAIX® also donated a backpack for each of the children to stuff with gifts during their shopping trip. It was an honor for HAIX® to support such a good cause and to put smiles on the faces of kids who needed a little extra Christmas joy this year.