This is the 12th year that FOP Urbana Lodge 93, in conjunction with the Urbana Police Division, will be working with city residents to ensure the holiday season is merrier for local children.
“This is a nice way for the FOP Lodge 93 and the Urbana Police Division to have some community connection and be able to help out those who are in need of an extra smile,” said Lodge member and UPD Lieutenant Josh Jacobs. “This is a really neat thing that we have been fortunate enough to do for the last 12 years. It gives the officers a good feeling and the children that we meet as well. It opens up relationships and friendships with those kids. We love doing this.”
Last year, 73 children from 29 Urbana families received gifts, Jacobs said.
Anyone who knows of a child who might be in need of a pick-me-up gift this Christmas season can fill out a form. There is no limit on the number of children registering. Registered children must live in Urbana and be 12 years old or younger.
Jacobs said registration forms are available now in the lobby of the Urbana municipal building, 205 S. Main St. Forms can be filled out on site or taken home, filled out and returned. The registration deadline is Friday, November 26. On the forms are spaces for the child’s name, address, age, gender and interests.
Starting Monday, November 29, visitors to the municipal building lobby will see the Giving Christmas Tree sporting tags, each with the age, gender and interests of a child. Names will not be on tags. Anyone with the Christmas spirit can select a tag, purchase a suitable gift of any price and return it to the Urbana Police Division with the original tag attached by Friday, December 17.
Lodge members will deliver the gifts a couple of days before Christmas, starting on December 22.
For more information, call the Urbana Police Division, (937) 652-4350, to speak with Lt. Jacobs.