SARTELL -- Local kids got a chance to go Christmas shopping with a police officer Tuesday in Sartell.

The Shop With a Cop program gives less-fortunate kids a $50 gift card and a member of local law enforcement to help them pick out gifts to buy.

"The officers actually select [the kids]," says Rose Seanger, Personnel Manager at the Sartell Wal-Mart. "The police are liaisons in the school, so they get to see these kids every day so they know who may or may not have that Christmas."

About 14 off-duty police officers from the Sartell and Sauk Rapids police departments volunteered their time to take part in the shopping spree.

"They've done it for so many years that I think they think about it all year long," Seanger says. "So when the Shop With a Cop program comes along they know who to pick."

Seanger has been a part of the program in each of its 15 years and says it's been a heartwarming experience.

"Christmas has always been about helping someone else out," Seanger says. "You see the kids out there shopping and sometimes they're not even looking for things for themselves -- what's important to them is they're getting [their] mom and dad something for Christmas."


Photo by Isaac Schweer, WJON
Photo by Isaac Schweer, WJON