The Police Athletic League of Jacksonville (JaxPAL) has been awarded a $20,000 grant from the AT&T Foundation to support its Teen Leadership Program.
JaxPAL’s Teen Leadership Program promotes college and career preparedness and instills valuable life and leadership skills that contribute to the success of its teens in becoming well-rounded, productive and thriving citizens.
“Our company’s future, as well as the country’s, is dependent on today’s young people. Through Aspire, we support programs that invest in students, especially those who need it the most, so they can walk across the graduation stage ready for their future,” said AT&T Florida Regional Director of External and Legislative Affairs Kevin Craig. “We are focused on building a viable, creative and adaptive workforce that is prepared to face the changing needs of employers and customers and programs like JaxPAL’s are critical in the development of students.”
Through JaxPAL’s Teen Leadership Program, teens attend monthly meetings, take college tours, gain hands-on job experience, give back to their community through service projects and attend leadership conferences and trainings.
While the program is open to all teens, the majority of the youth it serves live in the heart of Jacksonville’s highest-crime neighborhoods, where being exposed to violence, drugs, and gangs is an unfortunate reality. JaxPAL’s program is unique compared to other youth development programs because law enforcement officers from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office oversee the program and act as mentors to the teens, empowering them to demonstrate responsibility, decision making, and accountability.
“At JaxPAL, we believe that every young person has the potential to thrive in school, the workplace and life,” said JaxPAL Executive Director, Mary Bishop. “We’re thankful for our partnership with the AT&T Foundation and for their unwavering commitment to advancing education, strengthening communities and improving lives.”