The event featured free food, music, haircuts, make-up, and even employment opportunities. In addition, more than 300 free backpacks containing school supplies for students were raffled off for free.
“We just wanted to completely give back to the community of Elmhurst and the people that support us day in and day out,” said Tehari Head of JCPenney.
Dozens of police officers were also present at the event as they interacted with families.
“It gives them a chance to see that we are part of the community, we want to support them,” said Officer Seymour. “ We’re out here for them.”
Deputy Inspector Gazis said community outreach events such as these will continue in the area as the 110th Precinct becomes a Neighborhood Policing Command in October.
“That’s what these things are about, getting everybody out here to talk to us and feel comfortable around us,” he said.
He explained the program helps foster a relationship between residents and Neighborhood Coordination Officers (NCOs) through community meetings and events that encourage communication and trust.
“It’s nice to see them showing us and, most importantly, the little ones that they care,” said Maria Garcia, who attended the event with her children.