Six bags of children's books and stuffed animals were delivered Jan. 18 to the Dakota County Sheriff's Office as part of the Books to the Rescue service program.

Books to the Rescue is a program that gives comfort to kids in crisis. First responder vehicles get stocked with engaging kids' books and stuffed animals ready to give at a time in need to help soothe and distract children during emergency situations.

Sheriff Tim Leslie said that the deputies in Dakota County continue to encounter children and families in crisis and can use the Books to the Rescue program to help calm children facing challenging circumstances.

"Resources like this, provided by the community, give us another tool to help children and families," Leslie said.

The bags contain a variety of items that would be able to comfort a child. Vehicles will be stocked with books, stuffed animals and coloring books. There will be something for children of all ages, Leslie said.

Tami Zvolena, the Dakota County program coordinator, said the program is off to a great start, but there are more bags to fill for local first responders in Dakota County. The program relies on donations from the community. More information about donating to the program can be found at www.twincities