Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer speaks at a news conference on Tuesday. Photo by Donald A. Promnitz
Written by Donald A. Promnitz
At-risk youth in Southwest Fresno can expect access to a new boxing ring, fitness equipment, meditation room and mentoring programs with help from Kaiser Permanente Fresno.
With the ribbon cutting at the Cecil C. Hinton Community Center on Tuesday morning, Police Chief Jerry Dyer was in attendance, along with elected officials including Fresno Mayor Lee Brand, Fresno City Councilmember Miguel Arias, and Fresno County District Attorney Lisa Smittcamp.
Inside, they displayed some of the new equipment, and expressed their hopes of improving the lives of neighborhood youth with the help of the Fresno Police Activities League, which will be running the program. Kaiser Permanente Fresno granted $40,000 for the operation, aimed at keeping local children out of gangs and other predatory groups by providing them with mentorships and after-school activities.
“There’s going to be some great things happening in this gym,” Dyer said. “It may just be a building with a ring and some heavy bags, but the outcome is going to change lives in our students that will no longer be headed towards a life of gangs, but a life of success.”
Previously, the Police Activities League used the Romain Neighborhood Center for its activities, but extensive fire damage from a New Year’s Day incident put most of those on hold.