*STUDENTS HIT HOME RUN IN ANTI-GANG CHALLENGE*
ANGELS TO HOST MORE THAN 500 AT-RISK STUDENTS AT BASEBALL GAME IN PARTNERSHIP WITH COPS AND PROSECUTORS TO KEEP KIDS IN SCHOOL AND OUT OF GANGS
*Media interested in attending this event are asked to arrive at Angel Stadium at 3:30 p.m. to obtain a press pass
ORANGE COUNTY – In an ongoing effort to keep children out of gangs, the Los Angeles Angels (Angels) will open their gates Monday, June 14, 2010, to over 500 at-risk students as a reward for improved behavior and for staying away from gangs. The students will arrive at 3:30 p.m. and have early access to Angel Stadium, where they will be seated behind the dugout and have an opportunity to be greeted by Angels players, coaches, and broadcasters prior to the team’s stretch and warm up. The game begins at 7:05 p.m. when the Angels face the Milwaukee Brewers.
More than 500 students, ages 9 to 13, in grades 4 through 8, will attend the game. They come from 17 schools, including 13 elementary school and four middle schools in the cities of Anaheim, Buena Park, Orange, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, and Stanton. The names of the 17 schools will be displayed on the Angel Vision JumboTron during the game with a congratulatory message about the students’ improvement in school.
In September 2009, over 800 students with severe behavioral problems, including some with as many as 10 suspensions in one school year, were identified by the Gang Reduction and Intervention Partnership (GRIP) as being high-risk for gang exposure and activity. With an end-reward of attending an Angels game as a VIP guest, the students were challenged to complete the school year with improved attendance and grades, no suspensions, and involvement in positive after school activities. Over 500 students have successfully met that challenge.
The students will be accompanied by 500 parent and teacher chaperones, all as guests of the Angels, who donated over 1,000 tickets, free baseball caps for the students, and free parking for the second consecutive year in support of the anti-gang efforts by Orange County law enforcement and schools. This will be one of the largest VIP groups ever hosted at Angel Stadium prior to the opening of the gates to the public before a game.
“This incentive from the Angels is a Godsend for the teachers who are trying to save these kids and the parents who need community support to raise them right,” said District Attorney Tony Rackauckas. “Thank you, Angels, for truly caring beyond how many ‘Ws’ you get and pitching a life line to these kids before they strike out.”
“We are very proud of the students and their parents for taking advantage of the challenge,” said Anaheim Police Chief John Welter. “We are very grateful to the Angels for their tremendous help.”
“The Angels are once again extremely pleased to participate in such an important and successful program. The Angels organization salutes not only the kids and their parents, but all of those involved. This is an extremely important commitment for all,” said Angels Director of Communications Tim Mead.
Over 100 law enforcement personnel are also expected to be in attendance to congratulate the students.