In January 1991, the Boca Raton Police Department began its Police Athletic League (PAL) Chapter. To date, our PAL continues to assist youth who are at risk of academic difficulty, substance abuse, or criminal activity by providing alternatives during non-school hours. The PAL offers structured recreational activities with the opportunity to interact with police officers, athletes, and adult mentors who assist with sports conditioning while instilling respect and leadership.
Through the years, the PAL has proven to benefit our youth participants. Their hard work has paid off with success both academically and athletically. From scholarships for private schools and colleges to numerous awards and victories in state and national boxing and tennis tournaments.
Overall, the PAL has aided numerous children in developing greater self-esteem, improved decision-making skills, and helped to enhance their quality of life. The benefit of this growth extends beyond the PAL, as these young adults become positive role models for their peers and other youth in the community.
The first Police Athletic League was founded in New York City in 1935. Since then, Law Enforcement Officers have contributed millions of hours to American youth. Florida has led the way by being the first statewide PAL Association in the United States. California, New Jersey, Ohio, and Massachusetts have followed Florida’s lead.
Today, the State of Florida Association of Police Athletic/ Activities Leagues Inc. has 47 member cities and is growing. Police departments and Sheriff’s offices realize the importance of prevention in today’s society. More than any other profession, Law Enforcement Officers realize it is much more cost-effective to prevent crime than to incarcerate youth after the crime has been committed.
To provide a means for the exchange of ideas, experiences, and information regarding youth problems, their causes, and treatment and to develop effective solutions.