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Prosecutor's Office Provides Early Christmas for Child Victims


12/19/2023 1:36:00 PM

The Platte County Prosecuting Attorney's Office provided an early Christmas for several children who have been victimized by crime. The children had the opportunity to meet Santa and Mrs. Claus, received gifts, completed craft projects, decorated Christmas cookies, and had lunch with staff from the prosecutor's office on December 15.

Platte County Prosecuting Attorney Eric Zahnd said, "Our victim advocates, who work tirelessly every day on behalf of crime victims, spearheaded this effort to host a Christmas celebration for children who have been victimized by abuse or other crimes. The entire office joined in the celebration, and we hope we made the holiday season a little brighter for these special kids."

The event was hosted as part of the Zahnd's WE CARE program, where members of his office spend a Friday afternoon each quarter helping others. During previous WE CARE events, prosecutors and staff have volunteered at a local non-profit agency. This time, however, members of the office planned and carried out the event themselves.

The idea for the holiday celebration originated with Chris Poepping, Zahnd's long-standing office administrator. "The joy of seeing Christmas through the eyes of children is hoping that we are playing a role in holiday magic that might stay with them for the rest of their lives," she said.

Poepping, Victim Advocates Tanya Faherty, Adriana Jones, Kalei Becerra, and Breanna Highfill, and Child Support Advocates Heather Taylor and Sydnie Stewart coordinated the event, bought toys, decorated a county meeting room, arranged lunch, led craft activities, helped spread icing with children on Christmas cookies, and made sure Santa and Mrs. Clause were able to appear.

Victim Advocate Adriana Jones said, “We typically only get to see these kids during some of the worst times of their lives. Seeing their huge smiles filled with excitement, joy, and happiness about Santa, gifts, and cookies makes the hard job we do more than worth it.”

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