Annual Shop with a Trooper event held

Published 12:34 pm Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The holiday season is the time of giving and sharing — not just among families and friends, but also with the community. Nothing exemplifies this better than the annual Shop with a Trooper program held by the Kentucky State Police. For years now, the KSP has raised funds to to help underprivileged children receive a joyous Christmas in the form of a shopping spree at Walmart.

Despite the rain, snow and all around dreary weather, children and troopers alike arrived at Walmart Tuesday morning ready to enjoy the day together and make each other’s Christmas that much better.

The shopping spree in Middlesboro was the last day of the annual event, with 10 boys and 10 girls in attendance from the area.

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KSP Post 10 Public Relations Officer Shane Jacobs stated that this year, each child received $120 for their own personal shopping spree, lunch provided by Walmart and even a surprise bicycle at the end of the day — which the children knew nothing about.

“Each kid gets one-on-one time with a trooper. It allows them to know we’re here for them and to make sure that they are safe and that they’re not afraid of the police…we hang out with them all day,” said Jacobs.

Local schools are instrumental in finding the children for the program.

“I rotate schools. I contact different schools every year. The schools know their kids the best — therefore I let the teachers in the schools pick the kids and I give them a time and place to meet,” he said.

Every year three schools are chosen from the county. This year’s schools are Lone Jack, Pineville City School and Frakes.

“This is my favorite program I feel the state police have to offer. We’re giving back and it shines a positive light on our community. We’re getting that one-on-one time with a child that may change their lives forever. It shows the kids we’re here for them,” said Jacobs.

I’m glad to be out here doing stuff for these kids — it makes my Christmas go by better,” stated Trooper Sydney Wagner.

“It’s a great day for us to be able to impact these kids and make a positive impact in their lives,” said Jacobs.