WAYNESBORO, Ga. – Christmas shopping can be overwhelming for some families. Many parents try hard to give their kids the best Christmas they can, but it can be a financial burden. Burke County Sheriff’s Office decided to step in.
“Hopefully it fosters an appreciation for law enforcement. We love our community and that’s our goal. We want to be here to serve and do whatever we can to make their Christmas good,” says Chief Deputy Lewis Blanchard from Burke County Sheriff’s Office.
The Burke County Sheriff’s Office made an effort through a Christmas giveaway to make sure every kid has presents under their tree.
Thanks to community donations, hundreds of kids were able to pick from one thousand toys, 125 bikes, winter clothes and even see Santa Claus.
“I’m usually outside of everything. I’m an outsider..not really involved with everything, but for me to be picked and feel like I’m a part of something means a lot,” says Savannah Cash, who lives in Burke County.
Hours later, the sheriff’s office made a big appearance at Walmart for their annual ‘Shop With a Cop’ event. Another initiative to make sure no kids are left out during the holiday season.
27 families were paired with a cop, and given 100 dollars to buy clothes and toys. Ruby Dukes tells us this experience is a blessing for her 6 and 8-year-old great grandchildren.
“I know their Christmas is going to be great..the way they want it, because you know when you walk into the store and the children sees toys. They want this toy, but you can’t always get everything they want. But see they got the things I didn’t get, but they were able to get things that they wanted,” says Dukes, who lives in Burke County.
Officer Snider tells us he hopes this experience changes the community’s perspective of law enforcement the way it did when he was a 12-year-old boy shopping with a cop.
“When you’re a kid, you’re always told when you’re bad you’re going to go to jail. To actually have somebody take their time and walk around Walmart and shop for Christmas presents. It was something that I’ll always remember and maybe view them as giving back instead of someone who’s there when there when you’re bad,” says Deputy Johnny Snider from Burke County Sheriff’s Office.