O'Fallon Progress

Youth Police Camp teaches kids “teamwork, commitment and pride”

Most teenagers never get to experience what it’s like to be a police officer, but this July, local youth will come as close as they can get.

Personnel from Illinois State Police, local police, and United States Army are spearheading a week-long residency camp for youth from the metro-east area. The 12th annual Team Illinois Youth Police Camp will be held at Principia College in Elsah, Illinois and will start July 9. The camp will end with a formal graduation July 15.

The primary purpose of the Youth Police Camp is to establish interpersonal relations between the youth of this area and law enforcement in order to create a better understanding of the problems and attitudes of both groups, as well as to mentor, encourage, and foster positive behavior. All teenagers are at risk to drugs, violence and other societal pressures; hopefully, the camp will help to change lives and attitudes because of our intense desire to see our youth succeed and prosper.

The camp is a highly structured week-long residency camp for teenagers, boys and girls, ages 13-17. It will be based upon a military model of discipline and includes para-military drills, physical fitness exercises and classroom instruction on drug abuse resistance education, internet safety/cyber bullying, team building principles, and other life enhancing skills. Camp participants, are called “cadets,” and are introduced to the philosophy of “teamwork, commitment and pride.” Cadets utilize friendly competition and goal setting to learn a sense of accomplishment and esprit de corps. The week-long camp culminates with various recreational activities, individual award recognition and a formal class graduation ceremony.

The Team Illinois Youth Police camp is sponsored by numerous local area businesses, agencies, and organizations.

An application is linked to this story on the Progress website, ofprogress.com.

A $20 fee is required for each applicant. Applicants must be in good physical condition, capable of enduring strenuous physical training, including aerobic (running) and endurance activities requiring adequate air/breathing capabilities.

Cadets must reside at the camp facility for the duration of the camp.

For more information, call ISP Trooper Calvin Dye at 618-346-3524.

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