Twenty San Francisco kids were introduced to tennis in 2015 through the USTA Foundation’s National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) program, which partners with nonprofit youth development organizations around the country, serving more than 225,000 under-resourced youth.
Last year the NJTL partnered with the San Francisco Recreation & Parks Department to offer the free program to help kids improve their game on and off the court.
Known locally as Tennis Learning Centers (TLC), the program was offered at two sites in San Francisco: the Palega and Hamilton Recreation Centers. The kids who participated in the TLCs were given 30 minutes of homework time and 30 minutes of tutoring, in addition to tennis instruction.
“This program has really made a positive impact in these kids’ lives,” said Jon Fierabend, Youth Tennis Specialist with USTA NorCal. “These kids would absolutely never have played tennis had it not been for this NJTL.”
Founded in 1969 by Arthur Ashe, Charlie Pasarell, and Sheridan Snyder, the NJTL programs focus on:
- reaching out to those who may not otherwise have the opportunity to play tennis
- instilling in youngsters the values of leadership and academic excellence
- giving all kids (regardless of income, race, gender) the opportunity to fully develop their tennis skills so they can derive a life time of enjoyment from the sport