WPD Santa Cops hand out presents to Wilmington area children
WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - The pandemic is forcing many people to change their Christmas traditions.
For nearly 30 years, Wilmington police officers have taken needy children shopping this time of year, letting them pick out presents as part of the Santa Cop program.
Since that could not happen this year, they decided to deliver the gifts instead.
“Its just important to give back to the community and give back to the kids,” said Cpl. Anthony Merrit, one of the organizers of the event. “Let them see us in a different light than just responding to a call.”
The Santa cops played Santa Claus, going from house to house delivering gifts to children in different neighborhoods.
“It just makes me feel like my community cares about us,” said Kawana Bacon.
It’s been a tough year for Bacon and her son Caleb. In the midst of the pandemic, she lost her job.
“I was just worried about Christmas for my kids in general,” said Bacon. “Going from having a job to not having anything and worried about getting the bills paid; you don’t really have that extra you want to do for them.”
Now Caleb has the Rescue bots toy he wanted and more.
Not too far away from the Bacon family, is Mesiyah and his family
Mesiyah’s mom says she’s grateful not only for the gifts, but for the positive outlook police officers and the Santa Cop program fosters.
“Let the kids know cops aren’t bad, people aren’t bad and even though we’ve been going through a lot, it’s a blessing.”
More than 60 kids got gifts from the WPD Friday.
This was yet another example of life adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic and not letting it ruin the Christmas spirit.
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