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Prom was too expensive for some seniors — so the LAPD stepped in and paid for them

The Los Angeles Police Department paid for 60 seniors at a local high school to attend prom. (Image source: KCBS-TV video screenshot)

Some high school students can’t afford to go to prom, with tickets costing more than $100 at some schools. So, the Los Angeles Police Department stepped in to make sure 60 high school seniors could experience that special night, KCBS-TV reported.

What’s the story?

Admission to prom at David Starr Jordan High School in Watts costs $110 per person. That doesn’t count the cost of a suit or a dress, transportation, and any pre- or post-prom activities such as dinner or parties.

“Yeah, I want to go to prom, but the only thing going through my mind was ‘How are we going to pay for it?’” student Emily Flores told KCBS.

So, LAPD officers showed up at Jordan High School with a lottery-style big check for $7,000, which will allow 60 seniors who couldn’t afford prom to go.

“I’m very proud and honored to help out these students,” said officer Ken Lew, who is the CEO of the nonprofit that sponsored the donation.

The donation brought an emotional response from some students.

“I’m crying because there was a lot of students that couldn’t afford prom,” student Litzy Mejia said. “It was sad to see that you spend four years with them, and like they’re not gonna be able to go just because of money.”

Where did the money come from?

The LAPD was able to donate thousands of dollars for students through its nonprofit, Badge of Heart.

According to the organization’s Facebook page, Badge of Heart’s mission is to partner with the community to help police officers sponsor families in need, whether that includes victims of crime or people suffering from financial hardship.

“Seeing and hearing how emotional these students got made this so much more worth it,” a post from Badge of Heart read. “This is why Badge of Heart exists and continues doing what it does … 'it’s for the kids.’”

Lew, who founded Badge of Heart in 2014, is a Los Angeles native who wanted to give back to the community he grew up in.

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