This can be a tough time of year for parents who can’t afford the presents their kids ask for, but Youngstown police are trying to make that a bit easier.
Santa is coming in uniform for families in Youngstown this year.
Gifts for kids are being given to select families, and about 35 gift cards are also going to parents.
“So a lot of the times, they’re referred to us through churches, schools, social workers. In this specific case, I actually met her while I was out on the road,” said Officer Jose Morales.
Some parents have been out of work and can’t afford gifts, or some, like Star Wilson, won’t get paid until after the holidays and had to use the money she had on bills.
“We have six — five boys and one girl, and they’re twins and the twins are one year old. So it definitely came in handy this year,” Wilson said.
All of the toys were donated through Toys for Tots and Youngstown Police Department’s Fill-a-Cruiser event.
Most gift cards will go to the parents of the kids getting toys, but some officers were also given gift cards to give out at random.
One of those people took to Facebook thanking police saying, “Just when you start to wonder if you will be able to buy the kids enough gifts, ’cause they asked for expensive gifts, God sends a cop with $100 Walmart gift card thank you, God.”
“It’s amazing to see the kids smiling and see the people smiling. It’s a feeling that’s really hard to describe,” Morales said.