PLYMOUTH — The season is upon us — Shop with a Cop season, when FOP Lodge #195 makes it possible for several local children to enjoy a Christmas that they might not otherwise have.
“I got involved with Shop with a Cop when I was Director of Victim’s Assistance and they helped a lot of my families,” said volunteer Laura Mann of her longtime involvement with the charity. “It’s not a kid’s fault if his parents are out of work or experiencing some sort of hardship. I have always brought my oldest daughter (Chelsie) with me on shopping day because kids should learn that giving and helping others is something that is very important.”
Last year, Shop with a Cop was able to take 331 children out for the day — of the 800 who applied from all over Marshall County. Fundraising is under way for this year’s trip and will be highlighted by the annual auction Dec. 3 live on WTCA-AM 1050. On Dec. 7, notification of this year’s shoppers will begin for the trip on Dec. 11.
“I have been on several volunteer groups and believe me, Shop with a Cop is one of the most rewarding groups I’ve been involved with,” said Linda Jacobson of ReMax Oak Crest Realty. “The whole process is so organized and intense. The group puts hours of dedication into making Christmas memorable for those less fortune during these hard times.
“I know it gives me an enormous sense of satisfaction to know that my small part in this huge process puts joy into a family that otherwise would not have the ability to share in the holiday excitement.”
“For me, shopping day is the best part,” said Mann. “You’re assigned a kid to shop with and when you say ‘let’s go’ the first thing they always want to do is go get something for their mom or dad or sibling. The first thought on those kids’ minds isn’t themselves.”
Residents can donate by buying Shop with a Cop Christmas ornaments at many stores around the county. The charity is also still looking for auction items. If you would like to donate an item or monetarily, call 574-952-0012.
“Our community and the neighboring communities have always been generous and if not for the public and their continued support, this miracle of joy for some children would not happen,” said Jacobson. “I send my personal blessings to these folks and thank them for all they do during this season of giving.”