- Associated Press - Sunday, September 20, 2015

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - A Hartford police officer and a city seventh grader are being honored by the White House as “Champions of Change.”

The award recognizes programs that build bridges between youth and law enforcement.

Officer Hiram Otero and Kayke Lopes, who attends the Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy, both participate in the Charter Oak Cultural Center Good Vibrations program. It provides mentoring services to Hartford area youth through programs that teach kids to play the guitar, rap, and write poetry.

The youth and police officers also have open discussions about racism, crime, government, and family.

Otero and Lopes will be honored Monday in Washington with six other pairs of officers and young people and will get to meet Attorney General Loretta Lynch and former UConn basketball star Caron Butler.

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