Team sports now more accessible to all children

in Community/Philanthropy Corner by

Photo above: Tom Ertter and his wife.

Fall means football, school and kids everywhere getting involved in sports. Luckily, Beaufort Youth Athletics Fund can help all children join in on the fun.

The Beaufort Youth Athletics Fund of the Coastal Community Foundation supports children who are interested in participating in team sports but do not have the money to do so. Organizations must request funding from the program the same way they do from other non-profits. The guidelines and criteria for what the athletic program needs are up to the organizations discretion, but grant funding is focused on providing scholarships to pay for children’s enrollment on a sports team. So far, no organization has been denied a request for funding.

Tom Ertter was not the only one getting involved around the common cause of helping kids play sports. Upward Sports’ Beaufort, a local sports association, allowed the Fund to set up concession stands at their fall flag football and cheerleading events. All of the proceeds from the concessions went directly to support sports scholarships all over the county.

Tom Ertter, the Fund’s adviser and a Beaufort County Parks and Leisure board member, cares about the impact sports make in a child’s life. “It means a lot to give young people an opportunity to participate in sports.”

He explains the three or four aspects of playing team sports that significantly contribute to the positive development process for today’s youth. “They are not only physical but mental, social and for some leagues—like Upward Sports—spiritual.”

Tom believes Beaufort is not the only county in need of a fund like this. He says he is fortunate to be able to contribute but knows there is still an unfulfilled need in most counties.

Community members are encouraged to support the Fund in order to promote youth involvement in team sports with PALS and Upward Sports.

The Beaufort Youth Athletics Fund is a prime example of seeing a need in the community and finding a solution. Every child deserves access to opportunities – especially when they’re as fun and as beneficial as team sports.

To donate money to the Fund, please visit www.coastalcommunityfoundation.org. Click “Donate Today” and designate your gift to “Beaufort Youth Athletics Fund.”