COLONIAL HEIGHTS, Va. (WRIC) — 17 children in Colonial Heights will have an extra merry Christmas this year as they were given the opportunity to go on a shopping spree to buy gifts for their friends and family as part of Heroes and Helpers. The event was put on by the Colonial Heights police, Target and the Colonial Heights Kiwanis Club.
8News reporter Parker Slaybaugh spoke with Jeff Faries, the Colonial Heights Police chief who helped organize the event.
“To see them out here shopping with us and their family just makes a world of difference,” Faries said.
The event gives needy families the opportunity for a child to spend $150 on Christmas shopping.
“It’s great because these kids are out here and they aren’t even really shopping for themselves,” Faries said. “They are thinking about others.”
The money comes from Target, and this year, the Colonial Heights Kiwanis Club also donated money. In all, the kids were able to spend nearly $3,000.
8News spoke with Marc Monteleone, a representative from Target.
“We know there is a lot of people out there during the holiday season that struggle to make the holidays nice in their homes and if this helps alleviate a lot of that for them,” Monteleone said. “We want them to feel that there are people out there that can help them, like the Colonial Heights Police Department.”
And while today the kids may have been shopping for Christmas presents, today is about so much more than gifts and presents. It’s about building community relationships.
“We try to forge those relationships, just not one officer, but many of our officers and this is just an example of our officers volunteering to develop those relationships,” Faries said.