NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT), state police, and the Tax and Revenue Department teamed up to collect 600 stuffed animals to help kids during difficult times. The toys will be distributed to police departments across the state and officers will have them on hand when they respond to domestic violence calls involving children.

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They hope the stuffed animals provide some level of comfort to a child in a bad situation. “I have seen firsthand the benefit of a police officer handing a scared child a stuffed animal, I would like to be a part of putting a smile on a child’s face at the scariest of times. Together we can make a change,” said Teresa Valdez of NMDOT Ports & Entry Division Training and Development Manager in a statement.