Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles (BBBSLA) President and CEO Tiffany Siart today announced a partnership with the Los Angeles Police Department, part of a national mentorship program titled Bigs in Blue.
The program pairs law enforcement volunteers, “Bigs”, with children in local communities, or “Littles” – for support, encouragement and positive interaction with members of the LAPD.
The event also recognized support by the Los Angeles Rams NFL football team to Bigs in Blue and to BBBSLA.
(Police-involved shootings have disrupted communities and sparked protests around the country. But now a new program launched by mentoring organization Big Brothers Big Sisters aims to prevent children from seeing police officers as bad guys, through one-on-one relationships. Courtesy of NBC’s TODAY, the BBBSLA and YouTube.)
Charlie Beck, Chief of Police, speaking on behalf of the LAPD, has signed a five-year agreement to provide departmental support to recruit Bigs in Blue mentors from among officers and staff, especially male officers.
The mission is to commit a minimum of 20 “Bigs” per year for the period of the agreement.
The LAPD partnership goal is to provide positive and supportive role models to boys and girls, inspire community trust, and reduce the incidence of juvenile crime, drug and alcohol use, truancy and other at risk behavior.
The Los Angeles Rams have been enthusiastic supporters of Big Brothers Big Sisters in their former home of St. Louis and now in Los Angeles.
La’Roi Glover, director of player engagement for the Los Angeles Rams and a past Big, announced in recognition of January as National Mentoring Month, the Rams will highlight the new initiative during the team’s January 1, 2017 home game.
The team has also provided BBBSLA with 100 tickets to the game, so Big and Little pairs including current LAPD matches in Bigs in Blue can enjoy the game.
Also in attendance at the announcement were Los Angeles Police Commission Vice President Steve Soboroff; LAPD officer Keith Mott, a current “Big”; members of the Association of Black Law Enforcement Executives (ABLE); Latin American Law Enforcement Association (LaLey); Los Angeles Women Police Officers and Associates (LAWPOA); Oscar Joel Bryant Foundation (OJB); Los Angeles Police Protective League (LAPPL); Command Officers Association (COA) and LEAAP.
Big Brothers Big Sisters provides children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one mentoring relationships that change their lives for the better, forever.