Michael Waters, Mike Philogene and GYSA Founder Present To 250+ at GYSA Character & Awards Night
LAS VEGAS, Nevada. On November 15th,
2019 Greater Youth Sports Association, Inc. (GYSA) a 501(c)(3)
non-profit, serving at-risk, elementary-age youth in Nevada, hosted its first
Character and Awards Night of their 2019-2020 season. The event which was held
at SLAM Academy featured speakers including Michael Waters of Phase 1 Sports; Motivational
Speaker, Mike Philogene; and Devonte Woodson of GYSA.
The Character & Awards Night is a staple in GYSA’s premier
program, the School Sports SolutionSM. These nights conclude each of
GYSA’s three sports seasons and aim to teach student athletes important life
lessons. GYSA Co-Founder Annalise Lullo explained “We believe we can use sports
as a vessel to teach our athletes the importance of having good character and a
Each speaker presented to the athletes and their parents about the
importance of responsibility and taking ownership. The presentations were very
interactive and got not only the students excited and involved but the parents
and coaches as well. Devonte noted “there is so much good that comes out of
this night. It gets the students thinking about their futures while simultaneously
giving their parents tools to assist them in building successful lives”.
The next GYSA Character and Awards Night will take place following
their 2020 Basketball season in February.
ABOUT GYSA: GYSA, which was
founded in 2018, has accomplished much over its short life. Devonte and
Annalise founded their non-profit because they believe that cost should never
be the reason a child does not participate in sports. Sadly, this is the
reality for 7 out of 10 low-income students. During their first year they
impacted more than 700 students. This season they are on track to impact more
than 1,200. However, Devonte and Annalise feel they’ve only scratched the
surface with their impact. They hope to eventually impact more than 100,000
students each year.
Local NV Nonprofit Provides a Solution for Title-1 Elementary Schools
In 2017, the concept for Greater Youth Sports Association’s (GYSA) School Sports Solution program grew organically out of the desire to help one student. This student spent most of his time in the Principal’s office. He was angry, poised to distract others and altogether unengaged with his schooling. If you’re an educator or administrator you know this student… you’ve seen him/her before and the question you always ask yourself is “what can I do to motivate this child?”.
That very question was the spark that ignited the School Sports Solution Flame. After, GYSA Founder, Devonte Woodson (then Elementary School Teacher) discovered this particular student went home each day after school and did “whatever he felt like” with his older brothers, he decided to host a soccer camp at his school. The camp brought in more than 100 students which was when Devonte realized that many children could benefit from inexpensive, after-school sports programming.
Did you know that 7 out of 10 low-income children do not participate in organized sports? The two biggest reasons for this lack of participation are cost and transportation. GYSA is the solution to this problem.
After months of pilot programming and problem-solving, GYSA entered the 2019 school year partnered with 14 local, Title-1, elementary schools to provide them with after-school sports programming. The School Sports Solution program provides three sports seasons (Flag Football, Basketball and Soccer), reading mentorship and character development.
From the inception of the School Sports Solution program to today, the GYSA team and families have seen some truly transformational stories. This program is much larger than sports and hopes to have a lasting impact on the lives of all students they serve.
With their impact last Football Season the program is on-track to service 1200+ students this school year. But for the GYSA Founders this is just the tip of the iceberg. They hope to take the program to a national level and impact 100,000 students each school year.