WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - A summer camp for under-served kids is getting them off the couch and onto the field.
The program is all about getting active, but it's also teaching them that healthy choices when it comes to drugs and relationships are just as important.
"Doing the activities. It's kind of fun really," says camper and seventh grader JaShawn Allee.
Purdue Athletes Life Success Program (PALS) is teaching more than 500 Tippecanoe County students, ages eight to fourteen, about healthy living through sports.
"You don't have to spend your time in the house or watching TV or playing video games," said PALS Camper and Klondike seventh grader Rachel Gary.
A game that has been a big hit is called Sharbade. It involves rolling around on a scooter and throwing a ball into a net.
"You can lay around and scoot. I don't know. It's fun because you are on your tummy," said PALS camper and sixth grader Taylor Lehnen.
The four week camp is free to under-served kids based on referrals from their school. Lafayette School Corporation (LSC) Superintendent Ed Eiler said the LSC has almost 350 students signed up for the day camp.
"Improved attendance, reduction of discipline issues, perhaps greater participation in extra curricular activities. I think probably the most important thing the kids get out of it is relationships," he said.
Recently PALS started incorporating important life lessons.
"Not be addicted to drugs," Lehnen said of what she learned Wednesday at camp.
Alle said he learned about equality.
"It doesn't like matter who you are. We are all equal," he said.
Counselor Katelyn Lopze knows PALS can change a student's life. She said it changed her's when she became a camper ten years ago.
"Instilled just good characteristics on you. How to act around other people, respect the adults," Lopez said. "I have definitely matured a lot through this camp. It wasn't without PALS."
Lopez said before PALS, she didn't think college would be an option. Now she's a senior at Purdue.
"Just being a camper and hoping they get the same experience I got. Knowing that someday they could come to Purdue," Lopez said.
The camp runs through July 15.
This is the camp's 10th anniversary. It was previously called National Youth Sports Program.
A Lafayette man charged with multiple bank robberies in Tippecanoe and Clinton Counties pleads guilty to a series of bank robberies in Illinois.
The drop in temperatures brings the potential for health dangers, such as hypothermia and frost bite. The bitter temperatures can pose a threat for children, adults and pets.
As it stands Wednesday, there will be no FEMA aid for tornado survivors in Howard County.