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he Philadelphia Police Athletic League is an independent non-profit
corporation committed to "Cops Helping Kids". *Philadelphia PAL,
a registered 501(c)(3), is comprised of 26 centers across Philadelphia
serving thousands of youngsters both male and female. Each center
is supervised by Philadelphia Police Officers who are assigned full-time
to direct activities and oversee the young people. Programs include
sport, educational and cultural opportunities.
PAL is a mixture of police officers, civilian staff and a board
of directors, which is made up of 100 of Philadelphia's business
and community leaders (several of which are former PAL Alumni themselves).
PAL is “Cops Helping Kids,” a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose
mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of young people
and contribute to the overall quality of life in Philadelphia. By
providing free educational, athletic, recreational and cultural after-school
and summer programs in the safe environments of 26 centers, PAL programs
prepare children and teens to become successful and productive citizens.
All PAL activities are supervised by full-time Philadelphia Police
officers, providing a unique opportunity for nurturing strong and
positive relationships with kids in need, their communities and the
It began in 1947 with Sgt.
and a few volunteer officers organizing local kids
to play baseball, basketball and football. With its success the
Superintendent of Police (Howard P. Sutton) initiated a district
sports program to promote a better relationship between policemen
and the youth of the community. PAL continued to grow in popularity
and in 1949 it incorporated as a non-profit organization. By 1950
enrollment was up to 2,350 boys engaged in sports competition. In
1951, the Christian Schmidt PAL Scholarship began with five PAL
youngsters. With consistent support from private individuals and
corporations PAL has developed into its current form and is helping
more kids become success stories than ever before.