The CP Dream Team, a quarterly friendly basketball game to foster trust between youth and police officers, will celebrate a six-year anniversary on September 14 at 7pm at the College Park Community Center. Local youth from the Lakeland community, College Park’s historic African-American community, will play with officers from M-NCPPC Park Police, University of Maryland Police Department, and Prince George’s County Police Department to demonstrate the significance of community engagement.
The game will be in conjunction with the annual Lakeland Heritage Weekend, which celebrates African-American heritage in the Lakeland community. The mission of Lakeland Community Heritage Project, a key CP Dream Team partner, is to preserve African-American history in the area which began in the late nineteenth century.
“Sports are a way to connect people of all ages and the community of today with the past. Annually we celebrate Lakeland Heritage with CP Dream Team, presenting the past and recognizing sports heroes of today,” says Maxine Gross, Director of Lakeland Community Heritage Project.
Lakeland Heritage Weekend will take place the weekend of September 22 with a parade, picnic and benefit concert.
“The CP Dream Team has made a tremendous impact in the Lakeland Community. The camaraderie between the law enforcement agencies and our youth has been outstanding. Trust has been built, and continues to be built between the police officers and the community with each game”, says Reverend Edna Jenkins of Embry Center for Family Life, a local nonprofit in Lakeland and major partner of CP Dream Team. “We are listening and communicating with each other because of a commitment to promote, ‘Unity in the Community’. We have a common goal of wanting a safe and supportive community for all residents”.
CP Dream Team is possible because of collaboration between the University of Maryland, College Park Community Center (M-NCPPC), Lakeland Community Heritage Project, Embry Center for Family Life and the participating police agencies.