Rain last year spoiled the fun that Noel Tesfa was anticipating at the annual Toronto Police Amateur Athletic Association (TPAAA) Playground Games.
He was very happy that the weather was hot and humid this year, and he could join nearly 160 young people between the ages of 8-18 from West Scarborough at the event on August 25 at the West Scarborough Boys & Girls Club facility.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” the 14-year-old area resident said, while enjoying a break after hitting a baseball off a tee. “It’s great we get to do so much activity during the day. I also enjoy the police’s presence and having them talk about what they do. This has been a cool experience.”
Grade Nine student Ayana Lewis’ favourite sport is soccer.
“What is good about today is that we could play other sports and interact with police,” she said.
The event allows young people to be exposed to a variety of sports, including baseball, cricket, lacrosse and soccer and kids also got a yoga lesson.
“We just want them to come out and have some fun for a few hours with police and community workers,” said Constable Jennifer Nantais. “We are teaching them something about sport and what it takes to be fit.”
While basketball is Kideus Markos’ number-one sport, he relished the baseball component of the day’s list of activities.
“It’s not a game I have played before, so I happy to come out and learn to do something new,” he said.
The TPAAA collaborated with the Toronto Police Service, the City of Toronto, Enbridge, St. John’s Ambulance and KidSport Ontario to host the Games.
“We are thrilled to be part of this event,” said KidSport Ontario manager David Carr-Harris. “The annual event provides a wonderful platform for the Toronto Police Service to build positive and lasting relationships through sport in the communities they serve and protect. It also allows us to introduce organized sport opportunities to children and youth facing financial barriers to their participation and provide them with ongoing access to sports programs.”