Archived News Release from 2009
For Immediate Release
Redwood City Students Win Tickets to Giants Game with G.R.E.A.T. Essays
Redwood City, CA - May 5, 2009 - For the past eight years, kids from the Redwood City Police Department’s Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T.) program have participated in an essay contest sponsored by the San Francisco Giants and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF&E). The contest is one way of helping kids learn that there are positive alternatives to gang activity.
This year, 67 6th graders from Redwood City’s Kennedy Middle School submitted essays, and the City is very proud to announce that 11 of these students were selected as winners. And, 6th grader Issamar Morfin of Kennedy Middle School was selected as the overall second place winner! She will be honored by the San Francisco Giants at home plate on May 6th during a pre-game ceremony with all the other proud winners. Last year Kennedy Middle School teacher Mrs. Nancy Bloomquist was honored by ATF&E for being a G. R. E. A. T. educator supporter.
Over 1,100 6th graders from more than 15 schools in Redwood City, Foster City, Morgan Hill, Newark, Oakland, Richmond, Sacramento, San Francisco, and unincorporated areas of San Mateo County participated in the contest. The City congratulates all of the students that participated, and especially the winners! The winners will be attending the San Francisco Giants game on Friday evening, May 15, 2009.
The kids wrote short essays on one of the following subjects: “Making My Community a G.R.E.A.T. Place” and “Why Violence and or Gangs are not a Good Life Choice.” The purpose of these topics was to get kids to think about personal choices, the value of education, and taking responsibility for their community. It’s been a valuable lesson for all that participated, and the 11 winners from Redwood City get free tickets to a baseball game courtesy of the San Francisco Giants, and even a train ride to the game, courtesy of Kennedy Middle School. This year each participating agencies’ Police Officers / Deputy Sheriff’s Association donated money for the winners to have a banquet at Pac Bell Park.
G.R.E.A.T. is a life skills competency program designed to provide students with the skills they need to avoid gang pressure and youth violence. G.R.E.A.T.’s violence prevention curriculum helps students develop beliefs and practice behaviors that will help them avoid destructive behaviors. The national G.R.E.A.T. website is located at www.great-online.org.
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Officer Todd Hurst
Redwood City Police Department