#LoveHarper: Family donates dozens of kids’ comfort bags to local law enforcement

It is all to honor the life of a 2-year-old girl who loved to share.
Published: Apr. 1, 2021 at 5:40 PM EDT
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WYTHE COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) - April is Child Abuse Awareness Month and a Wythe County organization is teaming with law enforcement to provide a little bit of comfort to kids who may be in a tough situation.

It is all to honor the life of a 2-year-old girl who loved to share.

“We’re trying to be the voice to the children who have no voice,” said Shelly Poston, co-founder of Love Harper-Comfort Bags.

Shelly Poston is also a grandma making sure her granddaughter’s legacy lives on in something simple like a backpack.

“Kids need something, when they’re in a bad situation,” said Harper’s father, TJ Mitchell.

That’s why they started Love Harper-Comfort Bags. It is an organization named after Harper Mitchell, a 2-year-old who lost her life to child abuse in 2020.

“She wanted to share. She always wanted to share and that’s the point of the bags is to share and give to kids that have been in bad situations,” said Mitchell.

Her family wanted to bring a little bit of joy to kids in a hard situation.

“It’s hard enough to take that, that negative and turn it into a positive - you have to try. You have to try to do good,” said Poston.

They delivered about 160 of the bags to Wythe County law enforcement for them to take when responding to child abuse calls.

“Whenever a child is involved, you know that that hits you right in the heart,” said Lieutenant Bryan Bard, an officer at Wytheville Police Department.

Poston says each backpack is to help kids of all ages build rapport with police.

So far, more than 600 bags have been delivered across Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky. Most of the items in the bags are donated from people across the nation. Poston calls the response overwhelming.

“In April, a lot of the sheriff’s offices in the counties that we visit have done a drive within their departments, and so they are given back to us when we’re giving to them,” said Poston.

“I hope they don’t have to give them all out, but in the world today we’ll definitely, definitely give them out and just hope they give us a call for more,” said Mitchell.

If you are interested in helping or donating to the organization, you can reach out to them through their Facebook page.

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