Indiana Fever, city team up for summer jobs program

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INDIANAPOLIS (June 5, 2015) – The Indiana Fever joined forces with public safety leaders Thursday to help stop youth violence.

The Fever announced they’ll co-host a fundraiser Saturday to raise money to pay for summer jobs. Saturday’s 2015 Season Tip-Off Jam for Youth Summer Jobs is June 6 from 3 to 7 p.m. on Georgia Street, right before the Fever play their home opener.

IMPD Chief Rick Hite said the program is vital to keeping the city safe during the summer.

“Either we create open places, safe places for young people to work and spend a quality summer or we give them back to the street element,” Hite said. “Well, I don’t think that’s going to happen.”

Hite said the city saw a decline in summer crime because of similar programs.

“Last year we saw a reduction in crime and violence in our community, because of the summer job. We didn’t have the cab robberies we used to have. We didn’t have the pizza delivery robberies we’ve had in the past. And we saw a marked reduction,” Hite said.

Priscilla Bolden with Destiny Live Center for Performing Arts teaches teens how to fill out job applications, go through the interview process and open a bank account.

“It was teaching them responsibility and not just going out and getting some money, but there`s a responsibility behind that,” Bolden said.

The goal is to raise $70,000 for 500 jobs, with money going out as early as next week.