Pretty penny to participate…

Participation fees in youth sports is one topic requiring discussion. Should community sports be equally accessible to all? For Sondra’s circumstances, her financial situation is tight and the fee for two of her children to participate in their local youth baseball league is putting a deep cut in her budget. She believes the participation would benefit her young boys but the price asked is not realistic in her financial ability. The fee for the league is $75 per child but provides a $25 discount for every additional child. Even with the discount Sondra can not afford the $125 participation fee.

America is demanding an increase in specialization in youth sports, forcing young children to pick and play one sport year round. This trend is causing people to pay a pretty penny to participate in certain popular or well-known clubs that feed out athletes just because the price they are asking.

http://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Paying-to-play-is-new-normal-for-youth-athletes-4902034.php

This article gives some good examples about how participating in sports is now becoming an economic status.

“It cuts out a lot of minorities and people who don’t have money,” said Mark Merriwether, a Castro Valley resident who runs his own window-cleaning business and whose two sons play baseball. “It’s kind of like tennis and gymnastics were years ago. If you don’t have money, you can’t play. Baseball is looking that way, too.”

Cincinnati city’s local news station aired a story on how the lack of voters cut the budget of athletics causing a “pay-to-play” fee for their football program (middle school and high school) and other sports too and the affects of it.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tNL1gXZiEJ0[/youtube]

Sondra was lucky enough to be offered a discount for multiple children joining the league but a lot of programs aren’t as fortunate.

There must be another way.

In the You-Tube video above, they talk about how there are getting the local community involved to get donations by a dance or auction.

There are so many life skills and benefits across the board that children learn from participating in team sports, their family’s financial situation should not determine whether they are granted the opportunity or not.

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