Gannett Grant Fever Simmers as BYSC Earns Finalist Standing for $25K award

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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.

“We are deeply grateful, but not surprised by the support and generosity of the Westchester communities in which we serve,” said Danny Bernstein, executive director, Backyard Sports Cares. “Every kid deserves to play sports and parents should not have to say no to their children because access to sports is unaffordable.”

If BYSC is fortunate enough to win this generous grant, the proceeds would go directly into supporting the organization’s mission of delivering quality sports programs to the local communities in greatest need. Specifically, the money would fund and grow the BYSC Soccer and Basketball Leagues, which provide a travel team type experience for 4th and 5th grade boys and girls living in Westchester’s economically disadvantaged communities.

Thanks to all our supporters, players, parents, and friends for your help in getting us to the finals! Visit our Crowdrise campaign here and please follow us on Facebook and Instagram @backyardsportscares.

How Charles DeFrancesco’s Special Needs Son Inspired Him to Launch Fit 4 Fun

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Charles DeFrancesco Aims to Forge a Fitness Path for All Abilities Backyard Sports Cares caught up with Charles DeFrancesco, a certified personal trainer and owner of the Arena,  a personal training facility located in White Plains. Charles recently launched a new program called Fit 4 Fun to provide kids with special needs a place to go … Continue reading “How Charles DeFrancesco’s Special Needs Son Inspired Him to Launch Fit 4 Fun”

Youth Soccer Participation has Fallen Sharply — Cost of Entry Among Principle Causes

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Categories afterschool programs, inclusive sports, Soccer, under-served communitiesTags

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”

Bridging cultural differences through sport: Visiting UK coaches introduce rugby and cricket to Westchester grade schoolers

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Categories afterschool programs, inclusive sports, special needs sportsTags

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”

WVOX-AM “Wartburg Cares” Radio Show Features Backyard Sports Cares

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Categories Backyard Sports Cares, inclusive sports, At risk youth

  On September 20, 2017, Backyard Sports was given the incredible opportunity to co-host a local radio show through WVOX and Wartburg Cares Radio. Produced by Angela Ciminello, Vice President of Development and Marketing at the Wartburg Adult Care Community in Mount Vernon, Backyard Sports Cares Executive Director, Danny Bernstein and Dillon Faulkner, were able … Continue reading “WVOX-AM “Wartburg Cares” Radio Show Features Backyard Sports Cares”

Backyard Sports+ Special Needs Athletes Play GaGa at SUNY Purchase

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Categories inclusive sports, special needs sportsTags

This past weekend our Backyard Sports Plus Special Need athletes and coaches were treated to an indoor session of GaGa at Purchase College.  The GaGa pits were provided courtesy of Scott Blumberg and Talon Athletics, a local GaGa activity provider and manufacturer of GaGa specialty equipment. The players received progressive skill instruction, including striking a … Continue reading “Backyard Sports+ Special Needs Athletes Play GaGa at SUNY Purchase”

Backyard Sports Cares Brings Special Needs Sports Programming to New England

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  This fall, Backyard Sports Cares launched its first soccer program for kids with Special Needs in Weston, CT. In collaboration with the Weston, CT, Parks & Recreation Department, the program has gotten off to a great start with enthusiastic volunteers from Weston High School helping to teach young athletes soccer skills, while having lots … Continue reading “Backyard Sports Cares Brings Special Needs Sports Programming to New England”

Backyard Sports Plus Teen Basketball League Gets Going!

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Thanks to our teen coaches and players for a successful start to the Backyard Sports Plus Teen Basketball League.  Coach Vin Minotti led the group in clinical instruction followed by inclusive competitive basketball games for the squad.  We meet Sunday mornings at 10am at the main gym at Purchase College for all interested teen players and … Continue reading “Backyard Sports Plus Teen Basketball League Gets Going!”

Tennis Anyone?

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Backyard Sports Cares Brings Special Needs Friends & Fun to the Court Volunteers and members of Backyard Sports gathered at Ridgeway Alliance Church in White Plains on Sunday, April 3rd, for some intense and competitive games geared around the exhilarating game of tennis. The tennis program, led by Backyard Sports Cares and teen volunteers, helps … Continue reading “Tennis Anyone?”

BYSC Kicks Off Teen Sports League for Competitive Special Needs Players

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Categories inclusive sports, Soccer, football, basketballTags , , ,

Backyard Sports Cares (BYSC) has launched a new Sports League for middle school and high school kids with special needs. The unique and appropriately competitive 6-week program will run through mid-June with practices and games taking place at Purchase College. In addition to soccer, the league will resume in the fall with other sports, including … Continue reading “BYSC Kicks Off Teen Sports League for Competitive Special Needs Players”

3-on-3 Tournament Raises Awareness and Celebrates Day of Community Connection

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Categories Backyard Sports Cares, 3 on 3, inclusive sportsTags

For Special Needs Players and Typical Peers, Sports are a Barrier Breaker On Sunday, April 19th, we host our third annual 3-on-3 Tournament.  This event means so much to our organization and the kids that we serve.  In addition to raising funds that keep our programs going, equally important, is the opportunity to raise awareness … Continue reading “3-on-3 Tournament Raises Awareness and Celebrates Day of Community Connection”