Hundreds of youth met up with Peel Regional police, prisoner escort officers and cadets for the Thrill of the Catch outdoor fishing event. Kids ranging in age from five to 15 years old were able to compete with Peel Police employees in one of few outdoor activities that is possible to outshine an adult in.

Thrill of the Catch is part of a larger program, Kids, Cops and Canadian Tire Fishing Day launched in 2003 by the Peel Police and Fishing Forever. The latter is a non-profit organization aiming to help build productive and healthy relationships between children and adults.

The event took place at Glen Haffy Conservation area.

Also in attendance were students from the Youth in Policing Initiative (YIPI) , a partnership between the Peel Police and the Ministry of Children and Youth Services. Through it, they provide an eight-week summer jobs program for at risk youth living in diverse communities.

All of these initiatives are aimed toward improving a child’s self-confidence, esteem and helping them to learn new skills.

Sergeant Tim Vanbokhorst, who has been participating in Canadian Tire Fishing Day says “The Kids, Cops and Canadian Tire Fishing Day is the perfect opportunity for officers to interact with kids in a down to earth and laid back setting.” He goes on to say, “Being able to provide that moment when the child sees you for more than a uniform is such a rewarding feeling. For a lot of the kids, this is an experience that they normally would not have so I am glad we were able to make this happen.”

Kids, Cops and Canadian Tire Fishing Day is an annual event that is open to the public.

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