CHUBBUCK, Idaho (KXPI) - We are coming up on that exciting time of year for young kids. But the excitement is hard to find when your needs are greater than your resources.
Eyewitness News 3 anchor Todd Kunz found a local fundraiser that loads up the wallet to give kids a chance to shop for their families, with some of the heroes they look up to.
Time to Pay It Forward.
"At this time of year, you've got the, you've got kids, you've got families in need, and what we like to do is, we like to give a good experience for the kids out there," said Lieutenant Jeremy Taysom with the Bannock County Sheriff's Office.
There are 85 kids and their families this year for the annual Bannock County Shop with a Cop program. But before that can happen, they need to raise funds. They do that through the Stuff the Stocking fundraiser. Five different law enforcement agencies stand outside the Chubbuck Walmart, braving the cold weather and collecting donations. The law enforcement agencies are the Bannock County Sheriff's Office, Pocatello Police Department, Chubbuck Police Department, Idaho State Police District 5, and Idaho State University Public Safety.
"We care about our community. We live in our communities here, so this is our way to help give back," said Taysom.
Time to give back to them and Stuff the Stocking. Time to Pay It Forward.
"Oh you know, the kids absolutely love it. We've had kids that have been involved in this many year ago and then when they see us out here, they come walking up and they tell us how something like this still had a great meaning to them and how they very much enjoyed it. And how it uh...," said Taysom, as a women walked up.
"Hi there," said the woman.
"Hi. How are you?" replied Taysom.
"Good. How are you?" asked the woman.
"Good," replied Taysom.
"Hey, I'm just popping in. My name is Angie Phillips and I'm with Mountain America Credit Union," said the woman.
"OK, Angie. OK," said Taysom.
"And we heard about the Bannock County Sheriff's Office Shop with a Cop and you guys are Stuffing the Stocking today," said Phillips.
"Yes, we are," said Taysom proudly.
"We thought that was so awesome that you guys are giving back to these kids to help them have a happy holiday season," said Phillips.
"Uh huh," replied Taysom, wondering where this is going.
"And these families. Uhm, so we wanted to Pay It Forward today to the program," said Phillips.
"Well, thank you," said Taysom.
"In here, we've got $500," said Phillips, pulling cash out of a marked envelope.
"Oh wow. Well, thank you so much," said Taysom, taking the cash from Phillips, as she handed it over.
"You're so welcome," said Phillips.
"We appreciate it. Thank you," said Taysom.
"Thank you lieutenant," said Phillips.
"You know, we can't make this, this can't be possible without businesses, the community, the people out there. It's a great thing and it is something that warms our hearts. We're out here on a cold day, but it's a beautiful thing, so thank you so much.," said Taysom.
"Thank you. You're so welcome," said Phillips.
The Shop with a Cop event is December 10. If you missed the Stuff the Stocking fundraiser, you still have time to make a donation. The Bannock County Sheriff's Office has a Venmo account. Search for 'Bannock-FOP' or click here. You can also contact Lieutenant Jeremy Taysom at 208-236-7122 with any questions.
"Pay It Forward" airs the second Wednesday of every month. If you know of a nonprofit organization or someone who deserves to be recognized for their contributions to the area, click on "News" then "Pay It Forward" under the menu stack at the top left of our homepage. Fill out the submission form, or send an email to Eyewitness News 3 anchor Todd Kunz at email@example.com.