About UsThe Cleveland Police Athletic League program has been in existence for over 70 years, originally started in the late 1930's by then Safety Director Elliot Ness. Cleveland PAL was officially incorporated in 1956 and joined national PAL in 1966. Cleveland PAL is one of the oldest Athletic Leagues in the Nation and has a rich history in providing quality activities for youth. In fact, Several of our volunteers, coaches, and police officers participated in PAL as children. Although there are other similar recreational & educational programs, PAL is the only program in existence that provides daily interaction with police officers in the community.
Since its inception the Police Athletic League has provided opportunities for children in the community to participate in positive, wholesome sports, recreational, and extracurricular activities - providing thousand of children between the ages of 5 and 21 with an alternative to life on the streets. PAL hopes to divert children from negative influences and enhance a child's individual self-esteem, discipline, and actualization. PAL coach's help provide good role models for the children to interact with as they develop into adulthood. Cleveland PAL sponsors many sport activities throughout the year including: football, boxing, baseball, basketball, golf, tennis, and others. The vast majority of PAL kids come from minority and low income families.
Today, the Police Athletic League is one of the country's premier juvenile crime prevention programs with over 300 chapters nationwide. Since Lt. Flynn's vision became a reality, PAL's scope of activities has broadened to include additional athletic and educational opportunities such as archery, basketball, boxing, the arts, vocational guidance, martial arts, tutoring, and computer learning.