The second graders at Watkins Elementary School got a double treat for our Books & Badges reading today. Not only did Columbus Division of Police officers come to read to them--and the kids each got to keep a copy of the book--but the CPD Therapy Dog Unit visited as well! (We're not willing to admit which part of the event was the favorite. 🐶🐕)
Commander Rhonda Grizzell was accompanied by Sgt Chantay Boxill and Andy. Many of our Starfish volunteers have met this trio, as they've spoken at our meeting last year, and Andy and Sgt Boxill stopped by our Christmas Bag stuffing last month. We need to get Andy a Starfish pin for his collar and make him an honorary Starfish member!
Ofcs Heidi Graber and John Gagnon were in another classroom with pup Eddie. The kiddos there were really excited to hear that their room number (130) is the same as her cruiser number. The children loved her and asked her to sign their books with her badge number.
In the third classroom, we had therapy dog Simon, Officer Mike Paulins, and Community Liaison Officer Tim Mounts. While we do have a cute picture of Simon, we don't have any of the cops. Ofc Mounts is former SWAT and still used to going under the radar. But we really love that he's always on board for doing projects with Starfish. He actually made the trek across the city to pick up about 500 books for all the Books & Badges events we have scheduled on the South Side. He even volunteered to do two more readings himself in the next week.
All three classes read the same book, "How Full Is Your Bucket," and all the kids got to take the books home with them to keep. Thank you to Columbus City Schools for letting us meet these wonderful children today! 💙