MANHATTAN, NY – We’re approaching the first day of school and the NYPD is making sure hundreds of New York City students are prepared.
As of Thursday, at least 500 kids were at NYPD headquarters to get free haircuts and school supplies and play the department’s video game truck. Chief Jeffrey Maddrey of the Office of Community Affairs says it gives children a boost of self-confidence.
“Anything we could do just to cheer up, cheer their parents up and make sure they have a great first day back to school,” Maddrey said.
As well as providing them with resources, they also build a relationship with the police and the kids are thrilled.
“They are very nice, very nice and everything,” said Larry Bussey, 11. “They did all of this for the kids going back to school for us, so I thank them so much for doing this thing with us.”
Jarel Johnson, 9, also enjoyed the event.
“It feels good because the police are very protective,” Johnson said.
By not having to spend money on those back-to-school essentials, it helps parents like Shekebea Wright.
“They don’t have uniforms this year so I have to buy regular clothes and sneakers so that saves me,” Wright said. “I could get that money for school clothes for them.”
And what is schoolwork without a little play? Captain Tarik Sheppard says the NYPD video game truck is a fan favorite with kids all over town.
“This is how you end your summer before you go back to school – with enthusiasm, so when they come in for their first day, we expect them to thrive because everything before their first day is just positive, ”Sheppard mentioned.
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