LUDLOW, Mass. (WWLP) – A special toy delivery made it’s way to families across Hampden County Wednesday.

The Hampden County’s Sheriff Department collected and delivered toys for 300 kids in western Massachusetts. Sheriff Nick Cocchi recalls his own experience with the holiday season, “I’ll never forget those feelings and the excitement I had going to bed Christmas Eve. That same feeling has to be given to every child, regardless of the holiday they celebrate.”

The gifts are distributed to kids that attend the sheriff’s youth summer program, and those with parents that are incarcerated. The funding from these gifts is supplemented by local non-profits and businesses. Sheriff Cocchi says the event is a special way to connect with the community.

“What we’re trying to do is build trust. We want people to understand that we are here to help and support the community, whether incarcerated or in the community,” said Cocchi.

This toy delivery event first began in 2019. Members of the sheriff department say the event is just as rewarding to them as the kids involved.

“Very very gratifying. It’s a day that we’ve all come to look forward to, you know especially in light of the job and the mission,” said Chief Deputy Sheriff Robert Hoffman.

Lieutenant Michael Goldberg considers himself lucky to participate in the event. After the toys are collected, sorted and the delivery routes are organized… he jumps in a cruiser to drop off the toys, “I get the best part, I walk out and give the gifts to the kids its such a great opportunity. Very rewarding experience.”

This delivery of Christmas joy reminding the community that the sheriffs department’s role is to support those it serves, which includes making the holidays a bit more special for those in need.