When I spoke with Deputy Sheriff Patrick Weidel about the Shop with a Cop program in Niagara County, I told him I would do whatever it took to make sure we found funding for this program this year.
Shop with a Cop is a program by the Niagara County Sheriff’s Department that takes the kids in Niagara County who are victims of, or directly impacted by, violence in their community and gives them a day to celebrate being a kid.
The day starts out at the Sheriff’s Department where the kids get to meet the officers and staff. Then they ride with officers in emergency vehicles, sirens blaring, to the store where they are given a $100 gift card to buy whatever they want with their Sheriff department companion at their side. The most heartwarming thing is that often the kids use these funds to buy for others, not just themselves!
Then there is lunch and games and, possibly, a visit by a surprise star in a red suit.
Deputy Weidel called me the other day to tell me that our application was approved! The format, because of COVID, will be slightly different this year. But the kids will still get to choose gifts and spend the day bonding with the officers.
And best of all – I have been invited to join them! I cannot wait! This is why I love my work; I get to make a difference in the lives of others. This was not a large grant, but it has a big impact! Thank you, CSX!!