CRESTVIEW, Fla., Nov. 29, 2018—The Crestview Police Department is accepting lists—and checking them twice—for the agency’s annual Cops For Kids toy distribution.
The program brings Christmas joy to children from less-fortunate local families.
A program of the Community Services Division, Cops For Kids has helped families in need for about 20 years.
Today, Officers Wanda Hulion and Sam Kimmons carry on the tradition started by the late Officer Bill Napier toward the end of the 1990s.
“We know many local families are struggling financially, especially during the holidays,” said Kimmons. “We rely on donations from the community to make the program work.”
Since the day after Thanksgiving, local Crestview area residents have been turning in Cops For Kids applications.
At the same time, other families, individuals and businesses are donating new, unopened toys and cash gifts to be used to purchase toys.
“It’s a lot of work organizing this program,” said Hulion. “But when we see the relief on the faces of parents when they pick up the sacks of toys, we know it is worth it. It’s one less thing they need to worry about around the holidays.”
To be sure the police’s elves in blue have plenty of time to shop for this year’s participating children, their parents or guardians must submit an application form in person to the Crestview Police Department, Whitehurst Municipal Building, 201 Stillwell Blvd., by Dec. 10.
Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted.
Toy distribution will be Dec. 20 at Warriors Hall in the Whitehurst Municipal Building.
Applications may be downloaded from the department’s website, www.CrestviewPD.org, or obtained in person at the Police Department lobby window 24 hours a day at 201 Stillwell Blvd. in the Whitehurst Municipal Building.
Applications are also available at City Hall.
Officers Hulion and Kimmons welcome donations of cash or new, unused, unwrapped toys. Donations may be brought to the Police Department, or dropped off at Crestview, Holt or Baker Dollar General stores (except for the Crestview location by Tractor Supply), Walgreen’s, Allen Turner Chevrolet or City Hall.
Cash donations must be given directly to police officers.
Cops for Kids applications: Available at the Crestview Police Department, Whitehurst Municipal Building, 201 Stillwell Blvd. (behind CEFCO, next to Spanish Trail Park).
Applications are accepted through Dec. 10. No late or incomplete applications accepted. Depending on the volume of requests and donations, some families may not receive assistance.
Restrictions: Presents are limited to children ages 2-16 from north Okaloosa County families and who were not assisted by the program in 2016 or 2017.
Donations: New, unused, unopened toys and clothes may be brought to the Police Department, City Hall, all local Dollar General stores in Crestview, Holt and Baker (except the Crestview location by Tractor Supply), Walgreen’s or Allen Turner Chevrolet.
Cash gifts are also welcome but must be given directly to a police officer at the Police Department. Businesses wanting to participate can request a donation box by contacting Crestview Police Community Services at the numbers below.
Information: Officer Wanda Hulion, 850-305-2905; Officer Sam Kimmons, 850-305-7831
Brian Hughes, Crestview Police Department public information officer