Mountain View, CA, July 7, 2020 – Over the next four years, Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA), the leading national non-profit dedicated to providing a positive, character-building experience for youth athletes, will partner with Chicago-based foundation Susan Crown Exchange (SCE) to train over 400,000 youth coaches to foster the social and emotional needs of youth athletes.
After seven years of funding initiatives in social and emotional learning (SEL), this partnership marks SCE’s largest investment yet into youth sports. Combining physical activity, play, and collaboration, sports have near-limitless potential to help young athletes develop social and emotional skills like teamwork, empathy, and problem solving. These foundational skills boost young people’s academic, career and life outcomes; they help young athletes succeed, both on and off the field.
Since late February, youth across the country have endured unprecedented challenges: virtual learning, racial injustice, and the health and economic impacts of COVID-19, to name a few. Many of those young people feel powerless and hopeless, and express both a desire for structure and uncertainty around the future. The magnitude of the impact this has had on kids is yet to be measured--but as young people return to play, coaches will need the tools to meet kids’ social and emotional needs as they process this tumultuous time.
“Across the United States, forty million young people play sports each year. The coaches that make youth sports possible have a major impact on those young people’s lives,” says Haviland Rummel, Executive Director of the Susan Crown Exchange. “This partnership will help coaches across the country promote positive youth development, changing the lives of young athletes. As young people return to play after an incredibly tumultuous few months, this work will be more important than ever.”
For more than two decades, PCA’s mission has been to create a positive, character-building youth sports environment that results in “Better Athletes, Better People.” It’s clear that social and emotional development is critical for young people, and it’s equally clear that coaches are important role models for the athletes they serve. By bringing training on SEL and youth development to coaches across the country, we can help them transform the lives of the millions of kids who play sports.
“Regardless of zip code or socioeconomic status, our children need and deserve all the support they can access during this incredibly complex and confusing time,” said Chris Moore, CEO of PCA. “We’ve known for years that PCA’s social and emotional training empowers coaches to develop athletes of character who will be good teammates to one another. With this partnership, and in this moment, we’re looking to leverage PCA’s partnership with coaches across the country to provide the training they need to support young people as they return to schools and youth sports.”
In keeping with the organization’s core belief that life is a team sport, PCA is actively looking for like-minded organizations and individuals to join its mission of addressing the social and emotional needs of youth athletes everywhere. To align with both organizations’ commitment to ensuring a level playing field for the rising generation, regardless of access to resources, at least 50% of this training will support coaches in underserved communities.
To become a partner in this initiative to train 400,000 coaches:
About Susan Crown Exchange
The Susan Crown Exchange (SCE) works to prepare youth to thrive in a rapidly changing, highly connected world. SCE primarily supports organizations that operate in out-of-school time, prioritizing initiatives that promote social and emotional learning and explore the relationships between technology and society. What unites all of SCE’s partners is their commitment to creating opportunities for young people.
Through its Exchange Philosophy, SCE strives to undo the power dynamics of traditional grantmaking relationships. SCE provides avenues for mutual dialogue and learning alongside financial support in order to elevate their partners’ outstanding work.
About Positive Coaching Alliance
Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) is a national non-profit organization with the mission of creating a positive, character-building youth sports environment that results in BETTER ATHLETES, BETTER PEOPLE.
Youth sports currently involves 40 million children, which presents a tremendous platform on which to develop youth character and life skills. Research has shown that in order for youth to accrue these benefits from sports, sports needs to be done in a way that creates a positive youth development culture. PCA ensures sports are ‘done right’ with programming that is research-based and designed to have an impact at three levels in a youth sports organization or school:
Since its founding in 1998, PCA has established 18 chapters nationwide, partnered with roughly 3,500 schools and youth sports organizations to deliver more than 20,000 live group workshops, reaching 19.2 million youth. PCA offers interactive online courses and has thousands of multimedia tips and tools for coaches, parents, athletes, and leaders available free of charge on PCADevZone.org. PCA also runs two annual awards programs: a scholarship program for high school student-athletes and a coach award program to recognize youth and high school coaches who strive to win and teach life lessons.
PCA gains support from a National Advisory Board of elite coaches, professional and Olympic athletes, organization leaders, and academics who share PCA’s mission including Dusty Baker, Carol Dweck, Herm Edwards, Julie Foudy, Phil Jackson, and Steve Kerr. PCA is proud to partner with more than 50 national governing bodies, youth serving organizations and professional leagues and teams including Boys & Girls Club of America, National Basketball Association, Major League Baseball, and US Lacrosse.