The Roanoke Police Department started RPD Reads in 2013 as way for officers to interact with children at an early age. The department wanted kids to know that officers aren't robots; they don't need to be scared. Officers are people with families at home too. The partnership started with a single pre-school, the Betty Lou Brown Child Development Center, and has grown from there. Thanks to our friends at Total Action for Progress (TAP), and the Northwest Child Development Center, RPD is now reaching hundreds of pre-school children every year. Statistics show that reading at a young age is immensely important for children as they get older and take on more advanced topics in school. We're proud to work together with our partners in this initiative and we are seeing the benefits of relationships that blossom from regular interaction and positive experiences.