Basketball program unites police, community, middle schoolers

New Bedford police , community members and middle school youngsters are hooping it up through a new program, Cops, Kids, Community Development program, which pairs middle school kids with our officers and other community members through their shared love of basketball.

The first practice was held at the Christian Fellowship Center on Nov. 16.

The program aims to build relationships and provide mentors and role models to young people at a crucial time of their lives. The program was created by New Bedford Election Commissioner and co-founder of Achievements by 4, Manny Debrito, and New Bedford Police Officer Lt. Evan Bielski.

Present in the photo is Manny DeBrito, center, supervisor of attendance for the New Bedford schools, John Tweedie, far right and New Bedford Police Lt. Evan Bielski at far left.

Cops, Kids, Community Development would like to thank the New Bedford Police Union, Greasy Luck Brewpub, and the Southcoast Business Alliance for their generous donations to get this program started.

For more information or to purchase a T-shirt or sweatshirt to help support the program, contact

Manny Debrito at