Blue Chips Mentoring Program Brings the Community Together

There are many programs put in place that bring the community together. One program that is run by the NYPD is called The Blue Chips Program. It brings teens in the NYC community to practice and play a variety of sports together.  Participants are coached by the officers of that precinct, and along with playing sports, players are creating a bond.

“The NYPD Blue Chips Mentoring program was established by the NYPD for youth and the Police to come together and bond with positive interactions,” Coach Corey said. “We decided that the best way to do that would be sports.  Blue Chips give the chance for the youth of the community to participate in youth sports and activities against other Precincts city wide and develop a bond with the police.”

Blue Chips was created in the summer of 2021 and is an expansion of the PSAL league and mentoring through sports. This program lends a hand to kids in the community, giving them someone to talk to with open ears if you ever need help. 

“Blue chips have a huge impact on all the kids in the community,” Coach Corey said. “It shows them that there are many outlets in the NYPD for them to discover and explore. The program also helps show the NYPD in a different light to the kids and opens a pathway for communication and discussion and a platform to ask questions and find out what the NYPD really does.”

Volleyball, basketball, flag football, and softball are sports that are offered. They also offer something called “Girl Talk”, where girls can go and talk to mentors and learn more about certain topics they need information about. The NYPD additionally hosts events that are fundamental for children, and get the community to work alongside officers for a variety of activities. 

I always loved sports when I was younger and enjoyed coaching as well,” Coach Corey said. “When I became a police officer unfortunately this passion had to be put aside. Blue chips have given me the opportunity to help a lot of youths in my area through sports and show that the NYPD can be a trustworthy friend and mentor.”

Not only is it fun for teens to play, but it’s also fun for the officers to coach sports that they love. It creates a bond and a trust between the players and coach. 

“I just find it pretty cool that the police do these things because I really didn’t know that much about it,” team member Jadin Cruz said. “I knew of it but never really went into depth with the information so when I found out more about it I thought it was cool. I also like how we see another side of the police and how we could trust them and build a stronger bond between us and the NYPD.”

Anyone in the community can join, meet new people and learn new things about sports and life.

“I found out about it  because my friends were talking about it and they said it was fun so I wanted to join too,” team member Jae Kaito said.  “Personally I am close to the coaches so I talk to them about personal problems and they give me great advice and it really helps me with decisions in my life.” 

Jae also shared how she personally feels being a part of this team helps her as she gets the chance to see officers outside of uniform working with the community, and see another side to them. 

“It makes me more involved in the community and brings me together with other people who enjoy playing volleyball like I do,” Kaito added. “It also gives me more practice for when volleyball season starts at my school.”