Officer Robyn Winslow was making small talk about the holidays with Chief Anthony Anderson when she mentioned possibly adopting a family for Christmas.
Anderson said he was taken with the idea and asked Winslow if she wanted to organize a family adoption through the police department.
“I got the idea from a friend who told me she had adopted some families for Christmas and I thought it would be a good idea,” said Winslow, who’s been with the department a little over a year. “Working out here, I see how a lot of families are in need. I was going to do it myself and the chief thought it would be a good idea to include the department.”
Winslow worked with Verona Elementary School to identify two families in need.
From there, they are meeting with the families to compile a Christmas list.
Members of the department will get items off the list or donate money to go toward larger items.
“We thought it would be great to adopt a couple of families in the city of Verona instead of doing an Angel Tree,” Anderson said. “We could keep it in our own town and we’re hoping this is just a beginning.”
Anderson said they plan to do the Christmas shopping within the department, but anyone who wants to help out is welcome.
Donations can be brought to the Verona Police Department.
Winslow said she is going to talk with children from the families, as well as the parents.
“The kids aren’t going to want clothes, but that’s what they need,” she said. “I’m trying to do a balance of both. I know they need socks and stuff like that, and then I’ll talk to the kids themselves and ask what they want – a toy or something like that.”
The department will present the Christmas gifts to the two families Dec. 20 at Verona City Hall.