Police in one Nova Scotia town are handing out a different kind of ticket to kids this summer.

The Truro Police Service has teamed up with the town and local rec centre to reward children for being physically active, safe and respectful.

“We’ve noticed in our community that we do have some pretty good kids – I would say probably the majority of them – but they don’t get a whole lot of recognition for the things that they do,” says Truro Mayor Bill Mills. “Therefore we decided to come up with this program.”

Any child who is spotted by a police officer doing something good will receive a positive ticket, which they can redeem for a free pass to the rec centre.

“[Police officers will] be visiting our neighbourhood parks, Victoria Park, the skate park, and downtown in general,” says Truro Police Chief Dave MacNeil. “And any time they see kids that are behaving in a responsible, safe manner, then they can approach them and get a positive ticket.”

Keagan Skinner was among a group of boys “ticketed” for wearing their helmets at the skate park Thursday.

“Yeah it does feel pretty good. I never saw this before,” says Skinner.

“Being active and being safe are both two important things, so while you’re being active, obviously safety is number one,” says MacNeil. “So we like to encourage youth to follow the rules of the road when they’re driving their bicycles and wear their bike helmets.”

Police hope the initiative will encourage young people to get moving and be safe, but also develop positive relationships with officers.

The program runs until the end of the summer.

With files from CTV Atlantic's Suzette Belliveau