DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE AWARDS POLICE ATHLETIC LEAGUE AND BOYS AND GIRLS CLUBS CHAPTERS IN NEW ORLEANS
WASHINGTON – The Department of Justice today announced that $100,000 will be awarded to the National Police Athletic League (PAL) and the Boys and Girls Clubs of America to establish new chapters and build new facilities in New Orleans, La. The funds, provided through the Department’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP), will help bring a new PAL chapter for children to New Orleans, and re-establish Boys and Girls Clubs that were destroyed by the effects of Hurricane Katrina.
The new Boys and Girls Club/PAL Youth Education Town Center will host a kickoff event on Saturday, Dec. 16, 2006 to welcome hundreds of local youth to the facilities, and the New Orleans Boys and Girls Club and PAL staff will begin providing a wide range of activities and services for children in the city on Jan. 1, 2007.
The funding and facilities follow a visit to New Orleans on August 21, 2006 by Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales where he announced new resources for New Orleans to rebuild communities, and provide residents ways to keep their children safe, while assisting law enforcement in the area.
“With the opening of this new facility, New Orleans moves one small step closer to rebuilding the community it lost in the devastation of Hurricane Katrina,” said Attorney General Gonzales. “Children services and activities are important for any community, and I’m pleased the Department could assist the Police Athletic League and Boys and Girls Clubs in bringing these services back to the deserving families and children of New Orleans.”
Following the Attorney General’s announcement in August, OJP's Bureau of Justice Assistance convened a meeting with the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, PAL, and the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) to coordinate and expand PAL and Boys and Girls Clubs in the impacted area. In November 2006, the National PAL conducted a two-day training at the joint Boys and Girls Club/PAL Youth Education Town Center for NOPD officers and Boys and Girls Clubs staff on key PAL program components, including gang prevention, PAL coaches and officers training, and "teams for kids" training.
The Bureau of Justice Assistance, a component of the Office of Justice Programs, provides federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims.
The Office of Justice Programs (OJP) provides federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice and assist victims. OJP is headed by an Assistant Attorney General and comprises five component bureaus and an office: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; and the Office for Victims of Crime, as well as the Community Capacity Development Office, which incorporates the Weed and Seed strategy and OJP's American Indian and Alaska Native Affairs Desk. More information can be found at www.ojp.usdoj.gov.