The United States Tennis Association concluded its celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month, highlighted by multiple Hispanic engagement accomplishments led by the USTA’s Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) department, and $31,500 to 15 community tennis and other outreach organizations across the country.
The grants foster an opportunity to increase Hispanic tennis participation through multiple outreach events and follow-up initiatives.
Florida grant recipients were First Serve Miami, and the Posh Rock Foundation in Orlando.
Within the last four years, USTA D&I has seen an increase in Hispanic youth tennis players as a result of grant funds, including the Hispanic Outreach Grant, NJTL (National Junior Tennis & Learning network) Hispanic Outreach Grant, and the USTA Section D&I grant that are awarded to many programs serving Hispanic communities.
In addition, for the third consecutive year, the USTA’s D&I team also awarded 10 National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) chapters in select markets across the country with NJTL Hispanic Outreach Grants. In partnership with the USTA Foundation, which helped D&I select this year’s recipients, a total of $40,000 was awarded to support the recipients’ efforts in increasing Hispanic youth participation in their respective NJTL programs. Grant recipients were asked to create a new six-week or longer tennis program in their local community and then host a kick-off event to promote and register youth for a new program.
As a result of this grant funding, more than 1,900 Hispanic youth from across the country participated in the six-week program with over 90 percent registering as first time tennis participants. Due to the success of the program, several NJTLs are generating opportunities to continue this programming in the fall. To date, there are 4,634 new participants from local NJTLs as a result of the NJTL Hispanic Outreach grant.
Since 2015, USTA D&I has awarded multiple USTA sections with a Section D&I grant that is aimed at driving Hispanic participation and retention. This year, nine USTA sections were awarded a total of $70,000. This led to 4,103 new registered participants, including children and adults registered in entry-level programming. Since the grant’s inception, 10,596 new players from local Hispanic communities have registered to play tennis through USTA sections.
“We have made some tremendous strides in our efforts in engaging with multiple Hispanic communities and programs that impact these communities all around the country,” said USTA Chairman of the Board and President, Katrina Adams. “At the start of my tenure four years ago, I made it my mission to see to it that our sport grows and thrives specifically amongst this demographic. We have put in the work of educating ourselves and equipping our section and regional teams with the proper tools and resources needed in order to generate outstanding impact.”
“It all starts with our youth, and what a great accomplishment it is when we can positively change their lives through our sport. I could not be more proud of the D&I team for leading these efforts in developing the best strategies on ways to properly engage. The future is certainly bright with tremendous opportunities within tennis still to come for Hispanic youth as well as their families.”
To learn more about USTA Diversity & Inclusion go to www.usta.com/en/home/about-usta/who-we-are/national/about-usta-diversity-and-inclusion.html.
For more Florida info on D&I grants, camps, Tenis para Todos, LGBTQ, military, Hispanic, African American, wheelchair and adaptive or other play opportunities and support, go to www.ustaflorida.com/diversity.