New funding allows Indianapolis to expand its program to provide safe, productive and free activities for youth 13 years and older. The “Safe Saturday” initiative is now “Safe Summer.”
The expansion includes longer park hours and additional programming, such as sports, guest speakers and conflict resolution workshops. Funders include the Indiana Community Foundation, and director for community leadership Alicia Collins says it’s important for the city to create a safe environment for teenagers.
“Engaging youth in fun and enrichment opportunities is just one strategy of making sure that our neighborhoods are thriving and safe for everyone,” she said.
The city partnered with the parks department and the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department to provide the program. Chief Brian Roach says IMPD’s community engagement office is invested in prevention and intervention.
“The only thing that you see from us, a lot of times, the only thing that at least is portrayed is the enforcement piece,” Roach said. ‘But the prevention and intervention is so much more important, and so we are glad to have an opportunity to participate in that and be a part of it.”
The new funding provides the program through Aug. 10.