This January marks the third anniversary of Backyard Sports Cares Basketball League. The program engages more than 150 fourth and fifth graders in a weekly team practice and a Saturday morning game, where they have the opportunity to hone their competitive skills and have fun. For many of these athletes, the league has been their first experience participating in a team basketball program.
All of our league participants attend local elementary schools in White Plains. The program is designed to fill a gap in sports and recreation for local schools, so kids who don’t have access to competitive afterschool athletics can participate and reap the lifelong benefits associated with sports.
In addition to our Basketball League, this year’s BYSC Benefit Gala will fund four other vital community sports programs: Youth Shelter of Westchester, Soccer League, PLUS program for Special Needs, and Afterschool. These programs serve young athletes with limited access to sports and afterschool activities.
Read our wrap up post from last year’s final BYSC Basketball League game.
Inspiring stories of growth, compassion, and success from Backyard Sports Cares volunteer alumni “It was a very fulfilling and interesting experience. When I look back on it, I wish I could relive some of it.” In this second installment of our series on BYSC former volunteers, we connected with Andrew Goldberg, a graduate of the … Continue reading “BYSC Alum Spotlight: Andrew Goldberg tells how volunteering with under-served kids impacted his life”
LISTEN to our podcast interview with Danny Bernstein, executive director, BYSC When Backyard Sports Cares launched in 2009, we knew we were doing something special. There was a void for many parents in the Westchester Community who were seeking either affordable sports programming for their typical child or programs that were accommodating to their … Continue reading “BYSC executive director announces Next Generation Campaign to lead organization into the future”
Backyard Sports Cares (BYSC) has earned finalist status to potentially win Gannett Media’s A Community Thrives grant. To qualify as a grant finalist, BYSC had to raise $3,000 via a Crowdrise Campaign. The organization has exceeded that goal by raising more than $4,000 in three weeks — four days in advance of the campaign cutoff. … Continue reading “Gannett Grant Fever Simmers as BYSC Earns Finalist Standing for $25K award”
When you hear the name Talon Athletics, the sport of GaGa may not spring to mind, but it should. Based on an inspiration by Scott Blumberg and Will Perez more than five years ago, Talon Athletics has grown into the largest supplier of GaGa Pits, protective gloves, as well as the premier host of GaGa … Continue reading “The guru behind the GAGA ball — And BYSC’s Mission GAGA 2018”
This past week, the New York Times published a story about the decline in youth soccer participation in the US. According to the report, over the past three years, the percentage of 6- to 12-year-olds playing soccer regularly has dropped nearly 14 percent, to 2.3 million players. The number of children who touched a soccer … Continue reading “Youth Soccer Participation has Fallen Sharply — Cost of Entry Among Principle Causes”
Backyard Sports Cares “guest counselors”, Rhodrey Dafydd and Tom Finnigan of the United Kingdom, recently spent the month of May participating in our afterschool and special needs programs. They led early morning and recess rugby and cricket programs to elementary school students in White Plains and New Rochelle. They also assisted in a physical education … Continue reading “Bridging cultural differences through sport: Visiting UK coaches introduce rugby and cricket to Westchester grade schoolers”
As part of Backyard Sports Cares’ Mission: Gaga 2018 initiative, BYSC, in conjunction with host families, will be donating a portable gaga pit to the Boys and Girls Club so they can enjoy the game all year-round. To get the kids formally introduced to gaga action, Backyard Sports Cares hosted a Gaga Day on Thursday, January … Continue reading “#MissionGaGa takes flight at Mt. Vernon Boys & Girls Club”
How do you get at-risk youths in crisis to open up and take some hard-won advice? If you’re Backyard Sports Cares, the answer is pizza…and a few local heroes from the Westchester Knicks! This past week, Danny Bernstein, executive director, Backyard Sports Cares, decided to add a unique dimension to the recreational programming that the … Continue reading “Productive Discussion: BYSC brings local at-risk youths together with role models from the Westchester Knicks”
Following successful programs with the White Plains Youth Bureau and the Mary Blige Center, Penny Bauersfeld of Scarsdale recently completed a six-week “Learning to Look” art appreciation program with 12 elementary school-aged children from the Day Spring Center in Yonkers. The program includes five weeks of afterschool study of various periods and artists. Children learn … Continue reading “Backyard Sports Cares Leads Art Appreciation Program at Yonkers DaySpring Center”
By Arden Franklyn Although some believe tennis is an exclusive sport, it’s actually largely recognized around the world as a mainstream activity that can be played by virtually anyone. I recently caught up with Coach Rita, who leads the Backyard Sports Cares’ afterschool tennis program every Thursday at Ridgeway Elementary. The veteran tennis coach typically … Continue reading “Game, Set and Match! — An Interview with BYSC Tennis Coach Rita”
By Arden Franklyn Every Thursday, for 90-minutes, Rita, BYSC’s Tennis Coach, leads a group of 10 kids from Ridgeway Elementary through various energizing drills that are focused on the fundamentals of tennis. But the drills themselves aren’t the only reason why improvement has been evident among these young players. Before rackets or balls take to … Continue reading “BYSC Tennis Program Flourishes at Ridgeway Elementary”
By Arden Franklyn Whether your child swims for sport, exercise or fun, nothing quite compares to the feeling of weightlessness and freedom that swimming offers. I recently caught up with Colleen Ferguson, SUNY Purchase Swim Captain and lead coach for Backyard Sports Cares’ afterschool swim program for the Slater Center. Every Tuesday, Coach Colleen instructs … Continue reading “Just Keep Swimming!”