SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Santa Claus got a little help from the Savannah Police Department (SPD) with spreading a little holiday cheer.
A team of officers flooded the lobby of Memorial Health University Medical Center on Monday with one mission: to bring joy to the children who are unable to be home this time of year.
The officers brought along with them dozens of gifts in the form of toys, board games and other goodies for the kids to enjoy.
This was the police department’s third year teaming up with Memorial Health for the special holiday event.
There were so many toys to deliver, officers had to split up in teams as they dropped off gifts in the children’s ward.
“It gives us an opportunity to really interact with children in a non-law enforcement type of capacity, to let them see that law enforcement officers aren’t just people you call when you’re in trouble and you need help, but they really are here to serve their community in several different ways, and this is just one of them,” SPD Assistant Chief of Police Stephenie Price told News 3.
In addition to the presents, the young patients were treated to visits from McGruff the Crime Dog and Magic Marc.
Officers say the happiness on the kids’ faces as they receive their presents is why they make the special trip to the hospital each year.
“It’s an exciting opportunity, not only for our staff, our personnel but for the children,” said SPD Assistant Chief of Police Lenny Gunther.
“To be able to bring some joy into their lives when we wish they could be home, to be able to bring gifts and just a little bit of happiness to their lives this season, it means a lot for us,” he said.