This year, the National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS) will host a virtual Hill Day on Wednesday, July 22, 2020. Hill Day was created to advocate for assistance from Congress to help community-based organizations with an economic stabilization fund of $8.5B that will help youth sports providers solve gaps with the CARES Act. A series of Congressional meetings will be scheduled by NCYS to promote the importance of youth sports for young people, families, and communities.
The youth sports industry is made up of almost entirely volunteers, nonprofits, and small businesses. As COVID-19 continues to drive questions around Return to Play, the youth sports industry risks a complete collapse. The economic losses from this forced pause, while not unique to youth sports, disproportionately impacts under-resourced communities.
This is another step towards making the world of sports a safer place for all athletes. Currently, nearly 30 million children and adolescents take part in youth sports every year. Of the 65% of kids participating in sports, they are looking to be with friends and meet new people. Sports have many positive benefits including:
- Self-esteem development
- Social skills
- Acceptance of defeat
- Collaborative Life Lessons
In 2016, the Aspen Institute stated that three out of four American households have at least one school-aged child participating in youth sports. This only translates to 56.6 percent of American children, despite all the proven benefits. We want kids to continue playing sports safely and gaining the benefits of play. There are a number of reasons why kids leave sports. Last year alone, football, basketball, soccer, baseball and softball posted roughly 1.2 million injuries. Other athletes may experience abuse, some may face burnout and in some cases, families can’t afford for their child to play.
During National Youth Sports Week, let’s remain committed to making sports accessible and safer for all athletes. We are proud to have on boarded 2,500 sports organizations, with over 1 million athletes and 100,000 coaches in 37 different sports. We have had over 60,000 injuries reported on our injury management platform. May we all continue to do our part in making the needed changes in sports.