Marine Corps Community Services Yuma Youth Sports received a $2,500 donation from Sodexo, a food services and management company, on June 23, 2012, at Marine Corps Air Station Yumaâ€™s Oasis Pool.
The donation helps provide equipment, parties, and defrays some of the costs parents have to pay.
Time, money and energy stretched thin and make it difficult for the children of military families to pick up on sports and community based programs.
The MCCS Yuma Youth Sports program on base offers military families a chance to be a part of fun local activities. The tough realities, particular to military families, are not lost on Amarillo, Texas, native and Yuma MCCS Youth Sports coordination William Tracy.
â€œNinety percent of our coaches are active duty Marines,â€ said Tracy. â€œIt gives the kids a chance to participate in sports and gives the families a chance to do something here, on base, instead of having to go out.â€
The MCCS Yuma Youth Sports program offers t-ball, flag football, soccer, basketball and baseball. This summer, cheerleading has been added to the list of sports available. Once construction at Meyers Park is complete, MCCS will also look into developing track and field events.
â€œWe try to instill in the kids good sportsmanship, camaraderie, and skills,â€ said MCCS assistant athletic director Roberto Pou, a native of Mexico who has lived in Yuma for 32 years. â€œWeâ€™re here to provide the kids with something to keep them productive instead of wandering around all summer doing nothing.â€
Two new fields will be available for t-ball season. In August, MCCS hopes to get track and field under way. Flag football is slated to start in September and three soccer fields are currently under construction for January.
â€œI think itâ€™s a great program thatâ€™s specifically designed for the dependants of Marine Corps personnel,â€ said Al Schutt, a Detroit, Mich., native and Sodexo general manager. â€œItâ€™s a very tight-knit community and they know what theyâ€™re doing.â€
Registration and additional information is available at the community center in Building 1093. Flyers are available throughout the base advertising events and seasons. The age limit for youth sports is 5 to 12, except for soccer, which allows 3 to 4 year olds to participate.