Shop with a Cop provides $65,000 to area families

The 11th annual program, sponsored by the Quakertown Borough Police Department, hosted a record 240 children.
Posted on 12/10/2021
Quakertown Borough Police Department Chief Scott McElree Poses for a photo with his new friend.By Gary Weckselblatt

More than 60 officers from 15 local law enforcement agencies enjoyed their favorite day of the year Thursday as they partnered with the Quakertown Borough Police Department in its 11th annual Shop with a Cop gathering at the Walmart in Richland Crossing.

The event pairs police officers with children who are faced with life challenges, such as a parent losing a job, homelessness, military deployment, economic shortcomings, and other hardships. Each child is given a $150 gift card to purchase gifts for themselves and their family members. The youngsters also receive meals to take home and a school bag full of essential items and school supplies. While the children are shopping, parents are given $100 to shop for gifts or household items.

The program is geared toward Quakertown Community School District elementary-aged children, and gives them the opportunity to view police officers in a different atmosphere to promote positive relationships, said Scott McElree, Chief of Police for Quakertown Borough Police Department.

"Shop with a is an event our officers look forward to each year,” he said. “Not only does this event provide children with a better holiday, but it is also an opportunity for them to see law enforcement officers in a positive light and create positive relationships with one another. It’s an experience they will never forget.”

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QPD’s Shop with a Cop Committee raised more than $65,000 this year and hosted a record 240 children, an increase from 180 children in 2020.

“The support of the people in the community, from families to businesses, has been absolutely amazing,” said Bob Lee, a School Resource Officer in QCSD and a member of Quakertown Borough Police.

Several media outlets covered the event, as did Quakertown Community High School’s video production class, represented by students Emma Gradel and Noah Hoskinson.

In addition to Quakertown Borough, participating departments included Richland Township, Bedminister Township, Dublin Borough, Hilltown Township, Marlborough Township, Newtown Township, PA Fish and Boat Commission, PA Game Commission, PA State Police, Perkasie Borough, Pennridge Regional, Springfield Township, Upper Saucon Township, and Warwick Township. Multiple Departments have also partnered with the Quakertown Shop with a Cop Program by sponsoring families in their own communities.

Gary Weckselblatt, QCSD Director of Communications, writes about the people and the programs that impact the Quakertown Community School District. He can be reached at 215-529-2028 or gweckselblatt@qcsd.org.
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