Members of the Northeastern University Police Department, donning red Santa hats, delivered bags full of gifts to a child care center near campus on Monday afternoon, bringing holiday cheer and smiles to faces of local children.
The officers launched the NUPD’s second annual gift drive benefiting the Learn and Play Child Care Center a couple weeks ago. The effort began after St. Cyprian’s Episcopal Church on Tremont Street invited NUPD members to join them and others in the community for a Thanksgiving meal. Officers, touched by the gesture, were looking for a way to give back and realized that one way would be to support the child care center, which is located at the church.
“We’ve all been looking forward to this,” said Northeastern Police community service officer Celine Conte, as she watched the children play. “It’s really a special day, and we’re so happy to be here.”
Conte said this year’s gift drive was larger than last year’s. Officers donated everything from bicycles and stuffed animals to gym mats, tents, and play tunnels.
“These gifts mean a lot to these children,” said Loren Bynoe, one of the teachers at the center. “All the children’s faces lit up.”