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Beyond the Ball, Chicago, Illinois
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Beyond the Ball equips urban youth to be community leaders through athletics, service, and cross-cultural relationships.
Beyond the Ball equips urban youth to be community leaders through athletics, service, and cross-cultural relationships. We seek to engage youth who are at risk of dropping out of school or becoming delinquent in positive, healthy activity. We transcend the "hook" view of sports programming through activities that promote relationships, youth voice, leadership, community building, service learning and reflection. The emphasis is on a positive, proactive approach to guide youth towards a lifetime of responsible citizenship, meaningful work, and healthy relationships. Goals for our youth include leading healthy lives, reduced obesity rates, improved educational attainment, the breaking down of social and racial barriers, and to be an alternative to gang activity. Beyond the Ball engages youth as participants, not merely recipients. Youth are contributing and productive members of the community and are responsible for the success of each program. We currently serve over 1,000 individuals, Kindergarten to post-college, in the North Lawndale and Little Village neighborhoods of Chicago. Services include basketball programs, soccer, tutoring, mentoring, and youth leadership training. Programs are staffed by adult volunteers as well as local teens that Beyond the Ball has trained to coach younger children.
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