On Tuesday, December 14, 2021, the Woodburn Fire District (WFD) and Woodburn Police Department (WPD) presented school district representatives with 100 $50 Walmart gift cards to distribute to Woodburn families this Christmas.
The Woodburn Walmart has once again generously donated $2,125 to each group. Individual police officers and firefighters have added to the donations, bringing the total to $5,000, spreading the gifts out to additional families.
Police and Fire agencies across the country participate in the program, which originally began as “Shop with a Cop”. Over time, the annual event expanded to include fire agencies. Traditionally, students from local schools paired with police officers and firefighters shopped for gifts for their family members. With many COVID-19 precautions still in place, gift cards were presented again this year in lieu of the in-person shopping that has been a tradition in Woodburn for well over 10 years.
While the program has adapted to the pandemic, the focus and purpose remain the same: to provide a memorable experience and holiday gifts for children that may not otherwise be able to have Christmas gifts and provides a positive experience with police officers and firefighters as they often only see them in stressful and uncertain circumstances.
“We are happy to continue the tradition of making the Christmas season a little brighter for area families,” Said WFD Command Chief Joe Budge. “The Woodburn firefighters look forward to resuming the in-person shopping with the kids next year.”
Police Chief Marty Pilcher stated, “The Woodburn Police Department is honored to again participate in this great program and thank Walmart for their continued support. As one of our favorite yearly events, all of our personnel look forward to once again shopping with the children in the future.
The Woodburn School District’s Home School Contacts assigned to each school work to identify families who need additional support. WSD Superintendent Juan Larios shared, “We are so appreciative of these generous donations. It’s moving to see the joy and impact these gift cards bring to our students and families, thank you.”