PCA works with our partners to help them provide a positive, equitable, and accessible youth sports experience for all kids.

PCA’s data indicate that as a result of PCA programs and initiatives:


Youth exhibit increased teamwork, confidence, resilience, persistence, empathy, ability to bounce back from mistakes, and become more physically active.


Coaches exhibit the behaviors necessary for positive youth development and social emotional learning to take place (as identified by the well-established research on this topic that can be found at CASEL.org).

Coaches increase their focus on using sports to teach life skills.

Coaches feel more prepared in specific ways to use tools and techniques with their players to improve their resilience, their sportsmanship, and their character on and off the field.

Youth Sports Organizations and Schools

Youth sports organizations and Schools see their cultures become more positive.

Schools working with PCA on closing the sports equity gap see a significant increase in the number of BIPOC students participating in sports and the number of positive youth sports opportunities available.


Communities show increased quality sports opportunities for under resourced youth.

Parents feel more connected to their child's school and their community.


We rely on well-established evidence that shows that youth thrive and develop positive life skills in PYD environments, where adults exhibit a particular set of behaviors. Similarly, we rely on the well-established research regarding what adults need to do to enable social emotional learning to take place. PCA was founded on the principles from that research. An overview of the research base and approach to PYD, as well as some supporting articles, can be found here, and here.

The widely accepted eight key elements for fomenting PYD are listed below, and are the foundation of our work.

Social emotional learning (SEL) skill development and implementation has been heavily studied. An overview of what it takes to develop SEL skills in youth, as well as foundational research can be found at CASEL.org. CASEL provides one of the most widely adopted frameworks for SEL in the country. PCA's programming has strong links to the CASEL framework; a summary of how PCA programming explicitly links to social emotional learning is here.


At PCA, our commitment to sports equity is deeply ingrained in evidence-based models and frameworks. Our approach hinges on the conviction that the entirety of our youth sports ecosystem can collaborate to form an inclusive, equitable, and universally accessible sporting milieu. Here's a closer look at the foundational principles of our Sports Equity Initiative:

Collective Impact

Our work is rooted in this model's structured alignment towards equity-driven social transformation. By adhering to its five conditions—like Shared Measurement and Continuous Communication—we synergistically tackle sports equity challenges in historically marginalized communities.


This underpins our ethos. By applying recognized community engagement best practices, we foster collaborations, cultivate partnerships, and channel resources, all aimed at mitigating the sports equity gap faced by the youth, particularly in low-income communities of color.


Our strategy includes the use of the CoP model. We harness the collective concern and dedication of various stakeholders, focusing their energies on the sports equity challenges in low-income communities. This model fosters shared learning, the development of innovative strategies and practices, catalyzing meaningful change.


This is our compass. With tools designed for introspection and inclusivity, we ensure our actions resonate with cultural sensitivity and inclusiveness. Grounded in the pioneering work of Dr. Terry Cross and Dr. Randall Lindsey, our strategies emphasize equitable outreach and impact.


We address sports equity not as isolated challenges but as systemic concerns. Recognizing that societal issues are often tethered to underlying conditions, we employ Systems Change Theory. Our focus is holistic, targeting the root causes and aiming for lasting transformations.

PCA staff would be happy to share more and answer any questions you may have about our impact.

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