YMCA of Greater Long Beach

In Long Beach, action sports are close in geography, but often distant in affordability for many youth. The YMCA of Greater Long Beach is looking to flip that narrative. Aided by a $75,000 LA84 grant in March, the YMCA’s Youth Institute Exploring Sports program will continue to open youth’s eyes to a wide variety of action sports popular in Southern California.

Snowboarding, skiing, surfing, mountain biking, climbing, sailing, golf and archery are activities offered at the YMCA, which serves mostly disadvantaged youth in California’s seventh-most populous city. “The LA84 Foundation is going to teach many low-income urban teens in Long Beach many new skills and expose them to new sport experiences that will support their health and love of the outdoors for their whole lives,” said Vice President of Community Development Bob Cabeza.

The program is not only giving over 400 teens a chance to find their passion and expand their horizons, but it will also align with LA84’s mission of leveling the playing field for girls in youth sports. The Youth Institute aims to recruit with the goal of a 50-50 gender split, a massive step considering the traditionally male-dominated nature of the sports being offered. A local institution, founded in 1884, the YMCA of Greater Long Beach is now taking things to a new level when it comes to opening doors and changing lives through the power of sport.

Learn more about the YMCA of Greater Long Beach here

Learn about more LA84 grantees here