Wednesday, August 13, 2008

JUMP! events inspire kids in So Cal

JUMP! on Los Angeles's #1 rated KTLA morning news

Thanks to Brian Biery, the Flintridge Operating Foundation and Northwest ECHO -- which stands for Empowering Communities, Helping Others -- we just finished two days of awesome JUMP! events for kids in Pasadena & Altadena as part of Youth Month.

In 2007, Pasadena & Altadena experienced a spike in gang-related shootings that was centered in these neighborhoods. This spurred increased community efforts to connect at-risk kids with positive programs and activities that are alternatives to gang violence. With the shared goal of making a difference in kids' lives by providing fun, healthy and affordable activities for youth who might not have the opportunity to go away to summer camp or on family outings, Brian paired us with a local Boys & Girls Club and the neighborhood Police Activities League (PAL) for 2 days of film screenings, live performances and workshops to teach kids to jump.

About 500 kids attended and the photo below sums up the reaction best:

The kids loved the movie and seeing the jumpers live rocked the house. Jeff & Nick of the Texas team RazzMaTazz and Calli & Kelsy from the Summerwind Skippers inspired loads of people. After the movie and workshop, the kids above said that this is what they got out of the doc: hardwork, determination, and collaboration pay off. "When you fall, you gotta get up and try again."

We also received some great news coverage -- my favorite being the story posted at the start of this entry, which aired on KTLA, Los Angeles's #1 rated morning news show. See ABC's tv news story on us here; CBS's coverage of the event here; and The Pasadena Star-News article here.

And we all think that Corporal Glenn Thompson of the PAL program -- seen jumping out of uniform below -- is the bomb.

All photographs above (c) Walt Mancini, Pasadena Star-News.
(Available for purchase from the newspaper here.)

Special thanks to Nikki of the Santa Monica-based Jump Squad and Coach Rich with the Centralia Coyote jumpers for their amazing help.

If any So Cal groups want to start or join a jump rope team, please contact Nikki at the website above or the USA Jump Rope League for more information. Nikki is roaring to get more teams going in our area and it sure seems like the kids at PAL are READY!!

short JUMP! story on CBS news


Beulah said...

Thanks for writing this.

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