The St. Francois County Shop With a Cop Program recently wrapped up their final fundraiser for the year by collecting donations in front of both the Desloge and Farmington Walmart stores and are now preparing for their big event.
Shop With a Cop Coordinator Lora Henson said for years they collected on Black Friday, but they decided to get out there earlier in the month instead.
“We raised more than $3,000 at Farmington Walmart and we just finished counting Desloge, which is $2,055 and that doesn’t include the change,” Henson said. “We still have to take the change to the bank and they will count it. The day went better than we thought because it was cold.”
Henson said this year’s Shop With a Cop date is set for Dec. 18 at Farmington Walmart at 7 a.m. and the makeup day will be on Dec. 20 at Desloge Walmart at 3 p.m.
“The reason we did the makeup day differently is because some of the schools are going all the way until Dec. 21,” Henson said. “With Christmas being on that Monday and Tuesday, we didn’t want it to where the kids couldn’t get out of school who were on the makeup list, so we decided to have it at 3 p.m. so they could all come.”
Henson said she wasn’t sure how many kids they will serve this year, but the teachers will be getting their list together and hopefully they will help about the same as last year.
“It has been a great fundraising year and we do take donations year round,” Henson said. “They can donate to any of the deputies they see. They can drop it off at the sheriff’s department or mail it to us. I want to thank the community because without them this wouldn’t even be possible.”
Henson also gave thanks to Sheriff Dan Bullock because it is very time-consuming and without his support and help on it they would wouldn’t be able to do a lot of the stuff that they do.
“This may be the only Christmas some of these kids have and a lot of the kids are new to the community,” said Henson.
“This will give 500-plus kids a chance at Christmas that wouldn’t otherwise have it,” said Henson. “I am looking forward to it."
Anyone who is interested in seeing how Shop With a Cop works is welcome to come out and see the officers and kids interact and shop together during the event.