Trips for Kids Presents at the National Police Athletics/Activities League Conference
June 16, 2007 (PRLEAP.COM) Sports NewsSAN RAFAEL, Calif. - June 16, 2007 - Police officers and civilian Police Athletics/Activities League (PAL) personnel joined Trips for Kids at the 2007 PAL National Conference & Training Seminar on May 30 in San Antonio to learn how they can organize mountain biking adventures for underprivileged kids in their respective areas.
The full-house seminar highlighted the growing alliance between Trips for Kids and PAL, which formalized two years ago. PAL groups in Norristown, Pa., and Anaheim, Calif., run Trips for Kids chapters for low-income and at-risk youth in their communities, and a PAL chapter in Colton, Calif. is slated to be up and running shortly. If response to the workshop is any indication, there will be a surge of new PAL/Trips for Kids chapters hitting the trails with kids across the country.
Brett Wells, of Norristown PAL, touts the merits of becoming a chapter,
"It's free and so easy to join," said Wells. "We're tired of paperwork, but with Trips for Kids the requirements are simple - they genuinely want us to help the youth in the area and take kids mountain biking.
"Two of our bicycle patrol officers approached us about getting involved with Trips for Kids. It gives us one more opportunity to expose Norristown's youth to law enforcement personnel in a positive way. They are such a great fit with our goals and practices. We also discovered that being affiliated with Trips for Kids' nationally recognized program helps us get support from our local bike shops."
The alliance between the two national organizations began five years ago in the San Francisco Bay area when officers from Vacaville PAL brought their kids on Trips for Kids' mountain bike adventures in the Golden Gate National Recreational Area.
Amanda Davidson, of Vacaville PAL, said she appreciates the Trips for Kids partnership.
"The outings provide one of our strongest field trips for the kids," said Davidson. "All of the youth are from the city and would never have a chance to participate in these adventures otherwise. The views are incredible and the kids absolutely love it! The greatest part is watching the transformation of the kids who didn't think they could do the ride, by the end of the day, they have a new found confidence. Each ride offers a positive ending."
As with other Trips for Kids rides, many of the kids take home a new confidence and motivation. Many participants leave with a promise to exercise more, so they will excel with each future bike ride.
While the kids get exercise, fresh air, and gain an appreciation for the outdoors, they are also connecting positively with law enforcement officers in their community. The mountain bike rides are a natural way to bond - the officers love it as much as the kids do. Mountain biking is a great equalizer between the kids and officers - away from the city and out on a trail, everyone is enjoying the same challenge.
For more information on Trips for Kids National, please visit www.tripsforkids.org or call Marilyn Price at (415) 458-2986.
About Trips for Kids
Trips for Kids National is a 501(c)3 nonprofit based in Marin County, California. Trips for Kids started in 1988 as a grass roots effort by avid mountain biker, environmentalist, and Mountain Bike Hall of Fame inductee, Marilyn Price. Their programs give underserved youth a chance to experience the joy and challenge of mountain biking, while learning valuable life skills and an appreciation for the outdoors. There are currently fifty-one Trips for Kids chapters across the United Stated and Canada, with more on the way.
About National PAL
Based in Jupiter, Florida, National PAL is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization created nearly 100 years ago to prevent juvenile crime and violence. Their education, athletics, and recreation programs create trust and understanding between police officers and youth. PAL programs are conducted with the cooperation of law enforcement agencies in their communities. Today, more than 360 PAL programs are National PAL members. To learn more about National PAL go to www.nationalpal.org.
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Marilyn Price, Trips for Kids, 415.458.2986, email@example.com or
Chip Smith, SOAR Communications, 801.523.3730 (wk) / 801.597.7515(cell), firstname.lastname@example.org