Goshen News, Goshen, IN

December 6, 2012

Opinion: Stories about cops, kids, counselor worth telling


— Journalism, truth be told, can be a dour way to make a living. Want proof? Read this newspaper.

On any given day, The Goshen News is filled with accounts of crime, local economic strife and — thanks to The Associated Press — chaos both brewing and bubbling over in far-flung corners of the globe.

That’s part of the story. The rest reminds us why we picked this profession.

ON WEDNESDAY, we got report on Shop with a Cop, a program now in its 21st year in the Goshen area. We were pleased to do so.

The title pretty much says it all. Shop with a Cop pairs local children in need with a police officer for the evening. After a pizza dinner, the officers and their little buddies for the night head to a retail outlet — this year it was the southside Goshen Walmart — for a shopping excursion. The children are given a set dollar amount to buy items for themselves and their families.

Shop with a Cop costs between $7,000 and $8,000 to put on, and all the money comes from community donations.

“People are generous,” event organizer and Goshen police officer Jeff Schrock told The News. “We have some older couples that send us around a $200 check, deciding to donate rather than buy each other Christmas presents. Every penny goes to the kids — from the pizza to the shopping, whatever it is, it goes to the children.”

Thank you to everyone who donated this year. The money was well-spent. Thanks, too, to the police officers who gave their time to make a child’s Christmas just a little bit brighter.

NEED MORE positive news? This includes a feature about Kori Cripe, a counselor at Heritage Intermediate School in Middlebury. Last month, Cripe was named the Exemplary Elementary School Counselor of the Year by the Indiana School Counselor Association. The News has seen Cripe at work, and can vouch that the honor is well-deserved.

In part, Cripe’s job involves working with students as they deal with friendship, issues at home, bullying or other concerns. No easy task, but Cripe has taken it on. She also works with parents and staff and, according to Heritage Assistant Principal Jennifer Raycroft, is “a jack of all trades.”

Cripe’s efforts are laudable, but we’re happy to report that she’s not unique among Goshen-area educators. Time and again we’ve seen their commitment to their students, our children. This is indeed a fortunate community.

That said, this is Cripe’s time to shine. Her story begins on the front page of today’s newspaper, right where it belongs.