CPD working with young children in anti-gang effort

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Faced with what seems like ever increasing violence, Chicago police are trying to get ahead of gang influences with a program that tries to plant positive seeds in young children before the gangs get to them.

It's an anti-gang program developed by police in Phoenix, Arizona with the help of federal agents. And it's spread across the country and here to Chicago where police try to reach inner-city school kids before they get into trouble.

Police officers lead the Gang Resistance Education & Training program - or GREAT for short – and give kids coping strategies and tools to fend away gangs.

60 GREAT officers visit schools and parks across Chicago.

Special activities bring the students together and reinforce the importance of resolving differences without resorting to conflict or violence.

For the officers, it's an opportunity to bond with the community and present a softer side of policing.

For more information on the GREAT Program (Gang Resistance Education & Training Program) call 312-745-5841

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