By: Darwin Campbell,African-American News&Issues
Curtis Childs Sr. is dedicated to rallying disadvantaged kids and youth to get involved in the Houston Youth Sports Association – a special program that uses sports as a motivator, trainer and preparer for life.
“We offer the only free youth football teams in the state of Texas,” Childs said. “Our plan is to place a free sports program in all sports in every underprivileged community in Houston.”
Childs moved to Houston in 2006 with a dream. That dream was motivated by seeing so many friends and school mates lost to the streets of Chicago. He made a decision to work to do his part to help save a generation of youth at risk of being lost to the same mean streets.
“Kids today have few options,” he said. “Many of their families cannot afford to pay to have their kids play youth football or other sports. That is why what I do costs kids nothing. It is totally free to them.”
Childs founded the HYSA in 2010 and is a 5013C tax exempt organization.
His plan came together as a result of fundraisers and good will donations from people who believed and supported his dream.
In order to sponsor a youth it cost $300, but the money helps fund team sports and a curriculum that teaches the value of organized sports with skills development and guidance, structure and training on how to take advantage of positive resources in the community.
He started his work establishing a team of youth from the community in Garden City. He named the team the Garden City Warriors and started the first year. This year, he added another team from the Fairbanks community and named them the Fairbanks Mustangs.
“There is nothing like seeing the faces of these kids light up because they are doing things they never thought possible,” he said. “Seeing those smiles. That is what makes what I do worthwhile.”
He turns no child away and does everything possible to motivate and encourage participation and personal achievement.
As school closes and summer approaches, Childs said the HYSA will have summer football and cheer camp starting June 2 through August 22 at New Beginnings Christian Center, 6700 Antoine Drive, from 6 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
During that time, the children will receive breakfast, lunch and an evening snack, plus football and cheerleading training.
Childs said his next step is to establish another team in a disadvantaged community in the Third Ward or Fifth Ward.
“I hope to reach a total of eight and for these kids to have their own league” he said. “I want these kids to love life, have pride, learn to dream and set positive goals for their futures.”
For more information about the Houston Youth Sports Association, call Curtis Childs at 281-282-7637 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website at www.thehoustonyouthsportsassociation.org.