El Centro, California - Imperial Irrigation District employees, on Saturday, participated in the annual Shop with a Cop holiday shopping event in El Centro.

About a dozen IID employees representing several sections of the district (Emergency Management, Underwater Recovery Team, Security, Claims & Investigations, Energy Line Construction, Communications and the General Manager’s Office) joined more than 100 law enforcement personnel who volunteered their time to assist less fortunate children in a Christmas shopping spree at the El Centro Target Store.

Coordinated by United Families, Inc.’s El Centro office and officer Doug Struckmeyer of Immigration & Customs Enforcement/Homeland Security & Investigations, the Shop with a Cop event involved the participation of 18 agencies, touching more than 100 children. 

It’s the biggest turnout in the past 20 years for the charitable act, said Magda B. Franco, associate executive director for United Families, whose agency helps secure donations for the event.

“This year we had a lot of interest. It’s our biggest one so far,” she said. “We had a lot of volunteers pay out of pocket – and I just wanted to cry when I found that out. That doesn’t always happen.”

Although not a law enforcement agency itself, Imperial Irrigation District lends it support to the cause as a partner to the men and women of law enforcement and to children who are less fortunate.

“IID loves to take part in this to support our first responders and the children during this special time of year,” said Robert Amparano, regulatory and emergency planning coordinator for IID. “It’s a wonderful act of community service.”

Shop with a Cop volunteers represented the following agencies: Blue Knights, California Highway Patrol, Calipatria State Prison, Centinela State Prison, Drug Enforcement Agency, El Centro Police Department, Homeland Security, Immigration & Customs Enforcement, Imperial Irrigation District, Imperial County District Attorney’s Office, Probation and Sheriff’s Departments, Imperial Police Department, Naval Air Station, Parole Board, Quechan Tribal Reservation, U.S. Marshals Service and the Westmorland Fire Department.