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Group putting bags of books into cop cars

Posted at 10:43 PM, Jan 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-03 00:43:45-05

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - One group wants to make things easier on kids who just witnessed or were affected by something tragic by giving them something to read.

Jennifer Dillon is the program director for Books to the Rescue - Pima County. She is working to put duffel bags full of books and a stuffed animal into cop cars. Officers and deputies will then hand the books to kids in crisis, like a car accident, domestic violence situation, and more.

"The child is focused on the book, or the coloring, or stuffed animal rather than what is going on with the adults while they are being questioned," said Dillon.

This is one of two programs of its kind in the country. The other active program is in Ohio. Dillon is partnering with the Pima County  Sheriff's Department and the Tucson Police Department. She is also partnered with Mended Little Hearts of Tucson, a local group helping kids with heart defects.

"Books in the hands of our first responders I think is an amazing idea," said Sara Rhoads, co-director of Mended Little Hearts in Tucson.

So far, Dillon has one bag with books but is working on fundraising and sponsorships. Her goal is to get at least 50 bags into cop cars, she hopes the first one will be in place by March.

You can get in touch with Books to the Rescue on their website or Facebook page.