Wednesday, November 25, 2015 • 06:21

Cops duke it out for Battle of Badges

May 21, 2014
First responders battled for at-risk youth and disadvantaged youth at Agua Caliente Resort and Casino last weekend for the Battle of the Badges. Their motto? "Let's reach them before we have to rescue them."

When sports were cancelled at the local high school in Valley Center due to the wildfires last week, it gave us at the Roadrunner an opportunity to look at some other sporting areas that we think are worth mentioning.

The Cops 4 Kids and Communities program is a non-profit, volunteer driven organization committed to transforming the chaotic lives of young people through persistent and compassionate mentoring by law enforcement and other dedicated community members. Their programs include a youth boxing club, football camps, dance classes, martial arts, computer training, scholarships, School of Rock music, art program, and education counseling. They are based out of Hemet and provide the programs throughout San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

Not to be left out is the San Diego Community Youth Athletic Center "Battle of The Badges" to be held June 14 at the Four Points Sheraton in San Diego located at 8110 Aero Drive. Doors open at 2 p.m. and fights begin at 4 p.m. Similar to the Hemet-based program, they too offer programs to San Diego County youth. It serves as an alternative to gang membership by providing acceptance, challenging activities, and a good place to belong in a socially positive and encouraging environment. Their motto is "making a difference one round at a time." In 1998, they created their Board of Directors, and CYAC obtained its 501(c)(3) non-profit status.

Our country is facing some very challenging times. Resources are hard to find to meet the needs of local communities. Juvenile crime, drug addiction, homelessness, and unemployment as well as underemployment, and the ever-decreasing governmental programs, which help youth, are putting real strains on families and communities as a whole. Programs such as Cops 4 Kids and the Community Youth Activity Center, which are dedicated to the compassionate efforts to help our at risk youth from our communities to alleviate problems and help to identify root causes and provide programs and direction that have been proven to change young lives.

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