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The Hollywood PAL Scholarship Program started 8 years ago and continues to be a great source of pride for the entire community. On July 30th, the Hollywood PAL Scholarship Committee and Board of Directors hosted a special lunch for this year’s recipients at the Fire House Museum. Fabioulus Cafe catered the event and on behalf of Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, Dan Halden from CD13 presented each scholar with a certificate of recognition for the personal success and commitment to the Hollywood Community.

2015-2016 Scholarship Recipients:
Carlos Calderon
, Cal State Northridge
Andrew Franco, Cal State Northridge
Magno Enriquez, Vassar
Antonio Diaz, Pasadena City College
Tiffany Ortiz, Santa Monica City College
Alejandra Rivas, UC Berkeley
Cynthia Ayala, Cal State Fullerton
Mauricio Diaz, Cal State Northridge
Abel Luis Reyes, Cal State LA
David Aldana, Cal State Northridge

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Every year, Hollywood PAL packs the Summer calendar with field trips.  This gives kids a chance to spend some quality time with their PAL Officers, with a memorable experiences that they would not have access to otherwise. There are over 500 kids in PAL and already 140 have gone on a field trip this summer! This is possible thanks to our incredible community partners who donate tickets, food, and unique experiences. Special thanks to TCL Chinese Theatre, LA Galaxy Rising Stars Foundation, LA Dodgers Foundation, Quest Nutrition, the Let’s Play Hollywood Foundation, Cartoon Network, and El Capitan Theatre.

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Hollywood PAL provides comprehensive youth development to kids through athletic and recreational activities lead by LAPD Officers and volunteers. The 15-year old soccer program in particular is very effective in teaching personal skills that positively impact and inspire kids in our community. Last Spring, we grew the soccer program from 8 teams to 19 teams and we need your help in continuing to have this many teams for the Fall/Winter season. For $1000, your company can sponsor a Hollywood PAL Soccer Team for one year. Email vlord@hollywoodpal.org for more information, and take a look at how good the pal kids look wearing local logos!

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On June 10th, the families of Hollywood PAL came together to bid farewell to Officer Nikki Abskharon and Officer Debbie Slavin, who have been reassigned to working patrol in Hollywood. A big celebration was held in their honor at the Firehouse Museum & Memorial. Officer Abskharon is Hollywood PAL’s longest serving PAL officer, having dedicated 5 years to community relations and crime prevention through youth programs.  Thanks to her hard work and commitment, Hollywood PAL has achieved great growth and success. There were many tears and heartfelt stories shared that evening for both officers. While it is hard to say goodbye, the impact that they have left on the lives of so many kids is forever. We now welcome Officer Ericka Martinez and Officer Taybren Lee to the PAL program, and we are excited to work with them.

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Representatives of Hollywood PAL had the pleasure of meeting with Congressman Adam Schiff to discuss the PAL program and how it is positively impacting Hollywood. Congressman Schiff says that, “Building safe and secure communities is one of our most important national goals. To succeed, we must create drug- and crime-free schools, support a professional, visible police force rooted in our communities, and invest critical resources in the prevention and intervention of criminal activity by at-risk youth.” Building trust between the police force and families and investing resources in at-risk youth to steer them away from gangs and drugs is exactly what PAL does. We were proud to receive the Congressman’s accolades and appreciate his goals and strategies for our community.

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On June 6, Hollywood PAL participated in the Malinda Mo-Ota, Orange County Open Karate Championships in Huntington Beach California. The tournament is sanctioned by the Sport Karate Martial Arts Association and is very competitive. The kids trained very hard and represented our program in an exemplary manner, receiving many compliments on their spirit, discipline and respectfulness, on top of 25 trophies!  Special thanks to Malinda Mo-Ota for hosting Hollywood PAL.

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On March 29th, Shantel Leyva, who has been studying with Hollywood PAL for over eight years tested and promoted to Black Belt! Shantel is Hollywood PAL’s 16th black belt. The last to test and pass was Dario Calderon in 2009. Many friends in the community came out to watch and support Shantel, including Robertson Properties who has been donating the Martial Arts Studio to PAL for the past 9 years. The board of judges included John Reed, Robert Lennon, Master Bob White, Barbara White, Virgil Bartolomucci, Master Burnis White III, Ivette Aragon, Karen Aragon, Siaka Harding and Ron Sanchez. All were impressed by her forms, techniques, skills and essay. Congratulations, Shantel, and to all of the other Hollywood PAL Martial Arts students that promoted belts as well.

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On March 22, Hollywood PAL hosted its 6th Annual Pins for PAL Celebrity Bowling Tournament at Lucky Strike Live in Hollywood. Over 150 guests attended the lively event, and a great time was had by all!  To check out photos by William Kidston, head to the PAL Facebook page.

Special thanks to:

LANE SPONSORS: AmGraph, Avalon, The Avenue, Hollywood Museum, HYPE, Live Nation, Sunset Bronson Studios, Palladium Residences, Paramount Contractors, Tailwaggers, Tax Credit Co., and Thor Lee

FOOD SPONSORS: Hard Rock Cafe, Frankie’s on Melrose, Tin Horn Flats, Kettle Glazed, Confection Co-op, and Thad

PRIZE SPONSORS: Pure Skin Science, Dave & Buster’s, Tailwaggers, Fanciful Wine & Cheese, Fabiolus Cafe, Madam Tussaud’s, Famous Hollywood Dental, and Live Nation/Palladium

CELEBRITIES: Joell Posey, Keith Mitchel, Tai Bibilonia, Elizabeth Espinosa, Major Dodson, Dalton Gray, Taylor Hay, Mathew St. Patrick, Meredith Eaton, Stephen Full, and Pauley Perrette!

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Over the years years, Hollywood PAL has been building a wait-list  for its soccer program, and as we neared 300 names, the PAL Board of Directors and LAPD Officers decided to assess the possibility of adding more teams to the roster. With the help of our volunteer soccer coaches, who are passionate about making sure  kids in our community have a safe place to go after school, Hollywood PAL has added 8 teams for a total of 16! Excitement for the program is at an all-time high, with kids who have been on the wait list for years finally getting the opportunity to join the PAL program and have access to sports, mentoring, and community pride. Drive by Helen Bernstein High School Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays to check us out!
Also, please consider having your company sponsor a PAL team for $1,000! Team sponsors will have their company name and/or logo printed on their team’s jersey and receive a their own PAL jersey and team photo. Just another way to show your support for Hollywood PAL!  Sponsors so far include: Hollywood Museum, Blue Palms Restaurant, Live Nation & Hollywood Palladium, Robertson Properties, and Pantages!

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On March 22, Hollywood PAL sent 40 martial arts students to participated in the 10th Annual Bob and Barbara White Royal Family Kids Tournament at Huntington Beach, a tournament which raises money to help abused children. The pal kids were true champions and received the following awards: 15 first place medals in fighting and forms competition; 2 second place medals in fighting and forms competitions; and, 2 third place medals in fighting and forms competition. For more photos, please check out the Hollywood PAL Facebook Page