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Cops and Kids Hockey Program


Cops and Kids Hockey Program


racial relations
cultural diversity
police outreach
cultural integration


This is a video about the ProAction Hockey League, which is part of the broader Cops and Kids program run by Toronto Police Services. Members of Toronto's 54 Division coach kids from the Thorncliffe and Flemington Park neighbourhoods in Toronto. The kids, who might not otherwise be able to afford to play hockey, have the opportunity to learn Canada's game, and the police have an opportunity to build better relations with the largely immigrant communities that live in this area.


Toronto Police Services


Toronto Police Services, "Cops and Kids Hockey League", YouTube:


Toronto Police Services


March 4, 2015


(c) Toronto Police Services
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Proaction Cops & Kids, "Toronto Chapter: Programs": online:


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Cops and Kids Hockey Program

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Toronto Police Services


0:15(Buzzer noise) Good work, I saw you hustling down the boards
0:18over there. Good work, good job out there
0:21Want some knuckles? Oh yeah, Oh yeah, Oh yeah AISHAH SHERI: P-A-H-L ProAction Hockey League
0:25started six years ago. Initially, the program started because we wanted to have the police
0:32officers integrate with the community. So it started as a grassroots movement. Initially
0:38we had 69 boys. In the last six years our program has gone from 69 players to now over
0:48135 with 100 on the waiting list. From 0 per cent female ratio to now over 35 per cent
0:55and growing. CONSTABLE DAVE BESCO: I love hockey. I grew
0:55up playing hockey. And among these kids there is a great desire to play hockey. And if it
1:00wasn't for this program they would never think about playing hockey. The affordability is
1:04just not there in this community. It's a low income neighbourhood and we're providing equipment,
1:11coaching, you name it, we're providing everything. When they first start, they don't have that
1:16confidence, they're afraid to go on the ice. It's intimidating trying to skate on two edges
1:22that you're used to walking on your feet. And you've never done it before and you're
1:25out there with 130 kids and you're trying to learn how to skate. And by the time the
1:30games are starting -- it's a fast-paced game -- they're confidence level is through the
1:34roof and a smile on their face the whole time. CONSTABLE STEVE HANKS: It's hockey. I'm a
1:39Canadian boy. I grew up playing this game so it's just an honour to be able to be on
1:47my skates and during a shift and helping out the kids and teaching them the game that I
1:56grew up loving. BESCO: I worked other units and elsewhere
2:01at 54 Division and never have I seen work with the community in this aspect before.
2:06BIBI AISHAH: I like playing it because you work as a team and makes goals and I like
2:11the skating part. RUFINA ABDURUSUL: I feel happy every time
2:18we score and everybody is cheering and I feel so happy because we're really working together
2:26and we're trying our best. We're improving a lot.
2:29SALMAH SHAIKH: It was last game and everyone was all in a circle and I just took the puck
2:37and shot. INTERVIEWER: And you scored?
2:40SHAIKH: Yeah. BESCO: Here we give them a positive, and sometimes
2:45it is their first interaction with police, and it's a positive one and that's what we
2:48want. NAZERAH SHAIKH: Having the police officers
2:52as the coaches and as the mentors, I think for me, I saw that when Salma, Salma's my
2:58daughter and she's on the 10-year-old team. And she says 'I have the best coach' and then
3:04I talk to my niece who is on another team and she says 'No, I have the best coach.'
3:08So they're going at it and they both know that the coaches are all police
3:12SHAIKH: My coaches are very fun. Inside the locker room, they tie my laces, they help
3:20us put on all our stuff. And even if you're late they, like, quickly do your stuff and
3:26they like teamwork. You just do it together. MUHAMMAD BASEER: My coach sometimes makes
3:32us laugh whenever we lose. SHAIKH: In our culture the police are portrayed
3:38as people of power, you know, people of position. But I think when they show that people of
3:42power and position can use that to benefit the entire community, it becomes, they become
3:49more approachable and more real people. You see the softer side to law enforcement, I
3:55think. SHERI: On our sixth year, the integration
3:58between the community and police officers is outstanding. Even after our program is
4:03finished, we have community, people coming up to both staff as well as Toronto Police
4:10Service 54 Division and interacting with them out in day-to-day society. We have our players
4:16saying 'Hi, how are you... you were my coach, do you remember me?'. So that integration
4:20level is huge and it shows volumes for our program.
4:25BESCO: It's changed my view of the community as well and they teach me things as well as



Toronto Police Services, “Cops and Kids Hockey Program,” Exhibits, accessed June 19, 2024,