The Colorado Springs Police Department and SCHEELS have teamed up to give all of the 1,450 players registered to play soccer through the City’s sports office this spring their very own soccer ball. Throughout March, officers will visit practice locations citywide to deliver the balls and spend time with the kids.
This is part of the police department’s PlayCOS initiative, which is now in its third season. Since 2021, PlayCOS has hosted 73 events, donated to 21 schools, three community centers and has created more than 28,000 positive police/community interactions through sport. Learn more about Play COS.
“This is exactly how 8-year-olds should be meeting police officers – on a soccer field, kicking a ball around,” said Colorado Springs Police Sgt. Jason Newton who helped start PlayCOS. “It’s been awesome to see the smiles on these kids’ faces when we visit a practice site. What the kids might not realize, though, is the immensely positive impact they’re having on the visiting officer. It’s so beneficial for these officers to have these positive experiences out in our community.”
Officers are volunteering their time to participate in the giveaway which was funded by SCHEELS.
Local families are also benefiting from an Olympic City USA program that waived the registration fee for the first 460 kids who registered to play City soccer this spring.
Since the Olympic City USA free sports program launched in 2021, more than 1,900 kids have played sports for free in Colorado Springs and overall interest in the City’s youth sports programs has grown significantly. The program is possible thanks to generous grants and donations from the Daniels Fund, Boeing, the Chapman Foundations, Children’s Hospital Colorado, Colorado Springs Utilities, Comcast, Dakota Foundation, Gazette Charities Foundation, and the Schuck Foundation. Learn more at ColoradoSprings.Gov/FreeSports.