Philadelphia Youth Sports Collaborative

Building a System to Provide Sports-Based Youth Development for All of Philadelphia’s Children

Posted on August 6, 2019

There are a lot of good signs in Philadelphia today—population is increasing, the economy is strong, and our sports teams are winning. But we all know that over the long-term, Philadelphia’s future relies on our success in developing young people into healthy, successful adults. And on that front, we face some challenges.
Philadelphia is the poorest of the nation’s largest cities.

Today, 37 percent of Philadelphia’s children live under the Federal Poverty level. Nearly 30 percent of youth from low-income households do not participate in sports and physical activity nationwide, a rate 2.5 times greater than the level of youth physical inactivity in the wealthiest households.

Only 1 in 5 of Philadelphia’s young people gets the recommended 60 minutes a day of physical activity, and 1 in 5 gets no physical activity at all. That can lead to health problems for those children today, and is even more troubling for their lifelong health outcomes.

We also know that the occurrence of truancy climbs significantly between the ages of 10 and 14, and that youth who participate in sports and other school-sponsored programs tend to have better attendance rates.

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