If you’re more likely to be on the sidelines these days rather than in the game, there are still ways to be involved with the city’s sports scene and make a difference in the lives of young people.
Our friends at the Oklahoma City Police Athletic League are always looking for coaches to help with their after-school sports at Oklahoma City Public Schools. OKC PAL needs women and men to volunteer at the middle schools and younger grades to coach soccer, basketball, soccer and volleyball. There’s an IMMEDIATE need for soccer coaches in fifth and sixth grades. While the practices are after school, the games are usually on weekends.
You can also help mentor during after-school sessions. For more information, visit okcpal.org.
OKC PAL is playing its games on incredible, new fields thanks to the work for Fields and Futures. Started in 2012 by Liz and Tim McLaughlin, the nonprofit organization restores the fields and stadiums at Oklahoma City Public Schools. And by restore, we mean turn a field of rocks into a college-level facility.
But their work to add greener grass has turned into better results in the school system. Students are getting involved in sports, which means they have to meet certain grade and attendance requirements, so they’re doing it. OKCPS seniors who are in sports now have a 99% graduation rate and the athletes have a 2.8 GPA versus 2.3 for those that are not in sports.
So to be ready to take the field for their school teams, athletes will need equipment and that’s where Cleats For Kids comes to help. Started in 2011, the nonprofit organization distributes used and new sports equipment to schools in Oklahoma. The organization partners with dozens of other nonprofits and more than 100 school districts to get equipment to the young people that need them. Look for donation boxes around the metro and drop off your used equipment. Find out how you can get involved and even host a drive by visiting cleatsforkids.org.