Happy Hump-Day friends! We’re halfway through the work week and, if you’re anything like me, I’m sure you’re patting yourself on the back for getting to work on time(-ish) for three days in a row now (Woo!). Today, as we celebrate crushing the uphill climb that is Monday and Tuesday, we should also toast one of our wine glasses to sport.
Several years ago, the UN declared April 6 the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (#IDSDP2016). Due to its vast reach, unparalleled popularity and foundation of positive values, the UN believes that sport is ideally positioned to contribute towards its objectives for development and peace. And we couldn’t agree more.
Sport has the power to help develop the potential of individuals by encouraging personal growth, eliminating gender barriers and building bridges across lines that might otherwise divide. It nurtures society by reinforcing fundamental values such as equality and mutual respect and fairness. Moreover, sport particularly contributes to the inclusion and empowerment of vulnerable groups in society – the young people and persons with disabilities.
And so, today, we celebrate the wonderful role that sport plays in society by introducing y’all to a handful of great organizations that are harnessing the power of sport and comradeship to help improve the lives of people in underserved communities.
Girls on the Run inspires girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running.
Girls from low-income households in Philadelphia County have limited access to programs that promote physical activity and healthy living. Through this project, funders can provide scholarships to give girls access to a program that has been evaluated and proven to have a positive impact.
The goals of the Girls on the Run curriculum are to help the girls develop and improve competence, increase confidence, develop strength of character, respond to others and themselves with care and compassion, create positive connections with peers and adults, and make a meaningful contribution to community and society. This mission directly addresses the drop in perceived competence, self-esteem, and parental and peer support that is linked to the decline in physical activity seen among girls as they mature from childhood to adolescence; a trend that ultimately increases the likelihood of depression, substance abuse, and suicide.
Good Sports gives all kids the lifelong benefits of sport and physical activity by providing new equipment, apparel and footwear to those most in need.
According to the Aspen Institute’s Project Play, only 1 in 3 children is physically active everyday. As sports and fitness participation fees continue to rise, more kids are being left inactive on the sidelines because of their inability to pay. Participation fees are increasingly driven by the high cost of equipment. Good Sports seeks to ensure all kids have the right to play, regardless of their economic situation.
By working alongside influential sporting goods manufacturers, Good Sports is able to make high-impact donations of new sports equipment to community organizations and schools serving kids in need. The organization’s due diligence process ensures each donation is being used to get more kids off the sidelines and in the game, respectfully and efficiently. Good Sports is able to increase participation rates in sports and fitness programs, expose kids to new sports and increase the minutes of play and the self-esteem of the kids served.
The mission of love.fútbol is to partner with and empower underserved communities to build soccer fields where youth lack safe spaces to play. The organization provides raw building materials, guidance, and serves as a catalyst to communities in need of a safe place to play through a proven methodology centered around personal and community empowerment.
“love.fútbol uses a worldwide passion for soccer as a catalyst for social change in communities that lack safe places for children to play. Join us in building lasting symbols of unity, collaboration, development, and love.”
Drew Chafetz, Founder and CEO
love.fútbol is more than an organization – it is a movement led by the global soccer-passionate community to provide safe access to the game for all youth. Fields are maintained through a comprehensive sustainability plan designed between love.fútbol and the community members who are part of every aspect of the building process. The organization’s projects have consistently shown social impact in the areas of education, health, and decreased anti-social behavior.