August 20, 2013
With increased budget cuts to afterschool programs, the young people of Boston have few options when it comes to getting involved in sports.
In fact, nearly 70%of Boston high school students do not even attend P.E. classes in the average week.
Laureus believes sport can be vital in the development of young people and that is why we are delighted to announce our support of the training of quality sports-based youth coaches in the Boston area through Coach Across America (CAA).
The announcement comes on the fourth and final day of Up2Us’ Annual National Coach Training Institute in Boston, due in large part to funding received from Laureus USA. The Institute is a cutting edge training experience that links sports to positive physical and mental health outcomes. The training deepens coaches’ understanding of trauma sensitivity and how to use any sport to attain the full potential of physical activity from the youth they serve. After the training, 11 CAA coaches will be placed in afterschool sports programs in the Greater Boston Area.
Laureus World Sports Academy Chairman Edwin Moses, a two-time Olympic champion, was at Boston University’s Metcalf Hall to celebrate the announcement.
“We believe in the transformational power of sport as a tool for social good. Today’s coaches go beyond the traditional sense of the term ‘coach,’” Dr. Moses said. “It is important for an area such as Boston to have quality coaches serving these kids. They are mentors, community organizers and mediators. Investing in proper training and offering support for these coaches is vital to sports-based youth development, especially as obesity and youth violence escalate and school-based programs continue to be decimated by budget cuts. Initiatives like this are essential in America to fill the gap.”
Last year, Laureus USA announced its support of Up2Us’ CAA coaches nationwide, backed by $1.3 million in support from MBUSA, that served as an important catalyst in this widespread investment in the nation’s underserved youth. These efforts contributed to the training and placement of 250 CAA coaches in sports-based youth development projects in underserved neighborhoods in five U.S. cities: Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Miami and New Orleans.
Figures show one-in-four Boston high school students get less than 60 minutes of physical activity on any given day in an average week. Eighteen percent of students are overweight, and 14 percent are obese. The Institute’s focus is to equip coaches with the tools needed to promote healthy choices and behavior among at-risk youth.
The newly graduated participants from the Institute will work for programs serving many types of sports in cities along the Eastern seaboard: Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington DC and Miami.