HELP US COLOR THE E - Please consider giving $5, $10, $25, $50, $100 or more. We will use the money to purchase cheer uniforms, buy grey football pants, have our helmets reconditioned, and purchase other equipment needed for our athletes to be safe, have fun, and compete. For complete information on the Edgewater Pop Warner Association, please visit our website at www.EdgewaterPW.com and review our endorsed profile by the Central Florida Foundation at http://cffound.guidestar.org/NonprofitProfile.aspx?OrgId=1163644
Edgewater Youth Sports Association, Inc. is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit football and cheer organization serving the youth living in the Edgewater High School zone, Orlando, Florida. Our Association was started in 2015 with the goal of providing a safe and family-oriented place for all our young men and women (ages 5 – 14) to learn the game of football and sport of cheer, and to teach them how to be better members of our community. Included into our three primary objectives is an at-risk youth crime prevention element. The first objective is to build a family-like organization that is tied-in with the varsity football and cheer programs at Edgewater High School. Second, to instill the values that the Edgewater High School teachers and faculty strive to instill in every young man and woman on campus so our young athletes will be prepared to maximize their learning when they reach high school. Finally, to create an organization that provides a safe and off-the-streets environment to learn the game of football and the sport of cheer.
Our core strength comes from our role-model volunteers who are committed to making this organization successful – our executive board and all the parent helpers come from the Edgewater and surrounding community. The basis of our philosophy is to improve the outcomes for at-risk youth and prevent their perpetrating wrongdoing by focusing on their character first, education next (our academic requirement to continue participation), and building self-worth and community connection (our mandatory play rule policy) through the proper teaching of football and cheer.
We anticipate that our membership will again this year encompass approximately 210 aspiring young athletes between the ages of five and fourteen. Our athletes are divided into six football teams based on weight and age and six cheer squads based on age. Each football team has a maximum of thirty players and at least five adult coaches. Each cheer squad has a maximum of ten athletes and at least two coaches. This gives us a six-to-one athlete to coach ratio. We are committed to such numbers because we believe it is rewarding to each athlete to get that community role-model attention.
Our season begins August 1st and runs through late October. During this period, we practice 12.5 hours per week (two and a half hours per day for five days) until school begins and then practice 7.5 hours per week thereafter (two and a half hours per day for three days). Our jamboree game is the last Saturday in August and we have games every Saturday for eight weeks. For some teams, the season continues into November due to their success by making the playoffs. Once our games begin our adult volunteers are with our young athletes well over 10 hours per week.
Our Association has established an academic requirement that all participants must perform adequately in the classroom while they are permitted to play. These set standards give children a sense of responsibility and an appreciation that academics and athletics (or whatever other activity they do) must go together. This awareness will help our young athletes develop throughout life.
Equally important is our mandatory-play rule policy. We believe every youth can contribute to the team effort and learn to be a part of positive community development. One of the most appealing aspects of our football and cheer program is the strict rule that everybody plays. Not only do we skip tryouts and make no cuts--assuring everyone a roster spot--but our organization also makes sure every player gets into the game for a minimum number of plays. All players are provided their mandatory plays by participation in “active” plays, without the intent to minimize the action or integrity of the plays. We have determined that implementing this rule through the coaches builds in the young boys and girls a strong sense of self-worth and inevitably leads to self-improvement realization.
Our annual financial challenge is to make sure that every child who wants to participate has the opportunity regardless of financial situation. We don’t want to turn a child away due to insufficient funds. However, over half of our athletes cannot afford our $175 registration fee. We hold fundraisers, such as car washes and park clean-ups, during the off season. We encourage all our athletes to participate and help raise money for our scholarships program. These events are exciting because they bring our youth together outside of the athletic field and provide our community an opportunity to work together, build unity, and have fun.
We continue to make the community aware that what we are doing is different from every other youth football and cheer organization. We are letting everyone in our community know that this program is being built on family values and everyone that joins is a family member from the time they start until they graduate from high school. The Edgewater Youth Sports Association board, coaches, volunteers, participants, and fans are excited about our upcoming fall season. We are proud to be Edgewater Eagles. Please visit us on our website at www.EdgewaterPW.com and if possible help us financially continue to help our community.
- David May
- Angela Loyd
- Anonymous Funder
Edgewater Pop Warner