GUILFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – “We’re people too. We have families, we have friends, we like to have fun,” said Scott Gingras, the school resource officer for the Guilford Police Department.

Gingras grew up in Wallingford. His grandfather was a police officer and his mom was a longtime employee of the Connecticut State Police.

“She used to buy me police officer costumes when I was younger, I’d dress up and patrol my living room,” noted Gingras. He stated that at a young age, he realized he also wanted to serve his community like his family did.

“This is a way for me to be put in a position where I can be an advocate for others who don’t have anyone else,” he said.

Now, the 30-year-old is focused on youth, as a school resource officer for the Guilford Police Department. He works with kids, normalizing a positive relationship with the police.

“Children are very impressionable, so, the ideas and opinions that you form during childhood can be carried out with you throughout your whole life,” said Gingras.

This is also the mission of an upcoming National Night Out event.

“The point of National Night Out is to kind of bridge the gap between law enforcement and community,” he added.

“We want kids, their parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles, everyone to come down,” said Chief Butch Hyatt.

He explainied that it’s a chance for police to mix with folks at a fun event, not during a crime. There will be games, prizes, and even a vaccination clinic.

“Again, a draw to bring people down to get to know the police officers. We’ll have a number of officers down there. Everybody gets to dress down a little this year,” he said.

Gingras DJs on the side and even bonded with high schoolers during a special night.

“Once I told a couple of the students that I DJ, they said, ‘Oh, you have to DJ the Homecoming’ and went to the administration and asked if I could do it,” he said with a smile.

It’s all about building and maintaining good relationships, filled with trust. Gingras said he loves what he does and is motivated by the impact he makes.

“I do, I like it a lot. This is a great town and a great community, I wouldn’t work anywhere else, even if I had the chance,” he stated with a big smile.

Guilford’s 4th Annual National Night Out takes place on August 2nd from 4:30 to 7:30 pm on the Guilford Green. People from all around are welcome.