Mine is the eighth grade Jericho, Long Island, baseball championship game. I was pitching the game of my life, and we were just one out away from a victory as my best friend Stefan stepped up to the plate.
Long story short, he hit a walk-off home run to win the championship.
After about 10 minutes of sitting there with my teammates devastated, something really special happened. Stefan and his teammates came over to us, congratulated us, and Stefan handed me the game ball.
This is why youth sports are so special: They embody community, competition, compassion, winning, losing, health, leadership and friendship.
However, COVID-19, has put the entire youth sports category in jeopardy.
What Does COVID-19 Mean for Youth Sports?
Canceled leagues and tournaments equals no income for organizers (predominately nonprofits). Families are asking for refunds, and youth sports organizations’ bank accounts are running dry.
A youth sports recession is on the horizon. To understand the magnitude of the situation, we surveyed our network of 10,000 community youth sports organizers.
Here are three key takeaways from the data:
1. A lot of youth sports organizations will go out of business. Forty-seven percent of organizations (over 800 responses) said that they are at risk of shutting down permanently. And nearly two-thirds reported their bank accounts will keep them alive for less than 6 months. If 47 percent of organizations shut down, that will leave nearly 20 million kids on the sidelines.