Legacy and Phila Police Department Volley Against Violence
By KATELYNN WILSON & ADAM MOSKOWITZ (December 20, 2016)
“Working with Legacy’s leadership students are a bright spot in a day often filled with people not doing good, that’s why I keep coming back,” states Seargent Tanisha Richardson, of the Philadelphia Police Department. “They are interested in what we see in the community and genuinely want to know how we try to help.”
Sgt. Richardson, was introduced to Legacy Youth Tennis and Education and the Goodstein Junior Leaders through Volleys Against Violence, a program started this Fall that unites Legacy Youth Tennis and Education and the Philadelphia Police Department to foster a healthy relationship between our young people and Law Enforcement. Volleys Against Violence was first established in Boston, MA to help bring both young people and police officers together. The program’s goal is to create a ‘safe space’ with opportunities for informal mentoring, relationship building, learning and using life-skills.
Weekly engagements are held on Friday nights as part of the Goodstein Junior Leaders (Legacy’s high school leadership development program) regular meetings, with officers often staying until as late at 8:00pm to play tennis and join them for a healthy meal.
The Police officers have jumped right in and participated in the leadership groups’ regular activities as partners and advisers. They’ve contributed to development workshops, participated in the group’s team position election process and helped the high school students break the ice with Legacy’s Rising Stars during the group’s first meeting with the younger students they (the Goodstein Junior Leaders) will mentor for the remainder of the school year.
“The students are truly enjoying their time meeting and getting to know the Police Officers. They all look forward to asking questions about their various jobs as well as hearing the many similarities and differences they all share,” stated Katelynn Wilson, Goodstein Junior Leaders Coordinator. “Each week the group is more comfortable interacting with the officers, which means we are helping to create healthy dialogue between law enforcement and the youth of our city.”
To date the Goodstein Junior Leaders have been joined by Lt. Krista Dahl-Campbell, Sgt. Tanisha Richardson, Sgt. Paul Perez, Police Officers Kyra Davis, Chris Bartolo, Victoria Goodin and Hunter Phan. Additional officers will follow throughout the school year, while the students will continue to grow our relationship with the those who have visited and are slated to return.
To support Legacy’s Goodstein Junior Leaders and their work with the Volleys Against Violence program, please click here and select “GJLs Service Projects,” as the campaign.