USTA Receives Grant From Ford Foundation For "Community Building Through Tennis" Initiative

May 30, 2012

The USTA  has received, through its National Junior Tennis League (NJTL), and in partnership with the USTA Tennis & Education Foundation, a $400,000 grant from the Ford Foundation to help fund, an 18 month, $750,000 pilot initiative. The “Community Building Through Tennis” initiative seeks to utilize the sport of tennis and tennis facilities to build community in changing neighborhoods.

The “Community Building Through Tennis” initiative will utilize NJTL Chapters, with both traditional and non-traditional tennis facilities, to reach out to the community and build social cohesion. The $750,000 will support NJTL projects designed to bring together people from varied backgrounds in neighborhoods experiencing economic and social change. Of the over 500 NJTL Chapters nationwide, four have been selected for the initial pilot program.

The four NJTL Chapters selected as the Pilot Projects are:

Program Name Location

Arthur Ashe Youth Tennis and Education

Philadelphia, Pa.

MaliVai Washington Kids Foundation

Jacksonville, Fla.

Milwaukee Tennis & Education Foundation

Milwaukee, Wis.

Tenacity, Inc.

Boston, Mass.

“We are fortunate to have received a grant of this magnitude from as esteemed an organization as The Ford Foundation, and with it are able to make a significant impact on the lives of the people in these four communities, extending far beyond the scope of the tennis court,” said Jane Brown Grimes, Chairman of the Board and President, USTA. “This grant is an endorsement of the National Junior Tennis League, and will support the NJTL’s efforts to enhance the lives of children and adults in underserved communities.”

“The Ford Foundation is pleased to partner with the USTA and specifically the NJTL to amplify the important role that community tennis can play in building strong neighborhoods experiencing rapid transformation due to immigrant, reinvestment or land use,” said Miguel Garcia, Program Officer of The Ford Foundation. “The NJTL Listening and Learning Tour throughout 2005 impressed us with the depth of programming in urban areas. We hope our investment will serve as a catalyst for promoting the role of recreation as a key community building strategy across race, class, gender and age.”

The National Junior Tennis League (NJTL) is a program owned and managed by the USTA, founded in 1969 by Arthur Ashe, Charlie Pasarell and Sheridan Snyder, to provide through local chapters high quality tennis, life skills and education programming to children in underserved communities.

The USTA Tennis & Education Foundation is the charitable and philanthropic entity of the USTA. Its goal is to support organizations and programs that enhance the lives of people through tennis and education.

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