On Wednesday, they kick off the Black Giving Circle Initiative, the first program of its kind in the country. The program encourages Black business owners, community leaders and youth to support programs aimed to reduce crime and improve public safety in communities of color. Under the initiative’s umbrella is a variety of youth mentorship programs.
“We are really trying to develop these relationships at the youngest age possible,” said Tom Kovach, Executive Director of the LVMPD Foundation. “Before children or youth develop opinions, one way or the other, they have the opportunity to at least see and have their lives affected positively by law enforcement; have police officers as friends.”
One of the sports programs that will fall under the Black Giving Circle is the Bolden Little League. Kovach said that the second year after that little league was created, there was an 86 percent drop in violent crime in the neighborhoods where games were played. The Black Giving Circle is meant to create those ripple effects throughout the entire Valley.
Some of the programs include Hockey United, Reading with a Cop, Cooking with a Cop, Conversations with a Cop, Bolden Little League, Empowering Girls workshops and Hip Hop Entrepreneurship.
Community members are invited to the programs launch with a breakfast at 8 a.m. followed by a presentation beginning at 9 a.m.
If you’re interested in participating but cannot attend the event, visit lvmpdfoundation.org to become a member of the Black Giving Circle Initiative.