Read about Sidney Hayes and his work with Beyond Urban Sports for Youth.
Sidney Hayes grew up in the projects of Bronx, New York, and for the last 10 years, he has taught football, CPR and job skills to the children and youth in his neighborhood.
What kind of philanthropic or volunteer work
did/do you do?
I have completed my forms for a not-for-profit organization for the children and youth in the Bronx, New York. For 10 years I have dedicated my time and efforts to teach and help the youth to strive for better in
their communities by telling them and showing by example. I never used drugs or joined a gang. I coach 3 football teams, ages 10 to 21; I find the youth jobs and conduct job readiness skill programs;
I am a CPR instructor, certified by the Red Cross; I volunteer at the local high school as an assistant coach. My career is teaching, but my hobby is teaching moral and community standards to the youth.
What is the name and location of the organization?
Sidney: Beyond Urban Sports for Youth (B.U.S.Y.), 1591 Metropolitan Avenue, 4f, Bronx, New York 10462
Tell us about the project, especially who benefited from this work.
Sidney: The project is to help educate and inspire inner city youth on striving for better community life by learning the importance of voting, government, education, health, nutrition, career and job opportunities,
family and friend interaction, first aid and first response and sports. The sports component teaches leadership, teamwork and focus.
The children, the youth and the families will all benefit from the program because it helps the single parent and the working parent educate and influence the children to do better, and it will keep the child(ren) busy while the parent(s) are at
work, which will leave little or no time for teen pregnancy, drug selling or usage.
The program is also used as a tool to counsel and to learn to understand today's youth.
What inspired you to get involved?
Sidney: I was inspired by my mom, who is a foster parent today; she states, "Adults are constantly complaining about how bad and dangerous urban children are, but what are they doing to change it?" From that moment
I began to listen to the youth and talk with their parents and teachers. Growing up in the urban area, I personally noticed that there are things that can be changed for the better. After speaking with other concerned adults I was totally
motivated to strive to make a difference in somebody's life at least once!
How did you first get involved? Give us some details.
Sidney: Living in the projects in the Bronx, I first got involved after I joined my high school football team. Once I began to practice with friends in my neighborhood, younger kids asked me to teach them how to play. Note - I
would always wear my football jersey during my senior year. One of the kids that I coached began to sell drugs. I tried to talk him out of it but he wouldn't listen; the next year he was killed. From that point on I began to work and volunteer with programs affiliated with children,
youth and the developmentally challenged, such as -lifespire, Leake and Watts, Lutheran Community Services, U.C.P. The training and the experience I received has motivated me to graduate from college with a B.A. in Psychology and to form a board to create a not-for-profit committee to help
better serve the youth mentally, physically, emotionally and financially.
What is/was the best thing about your experience?
Sidney: The best thing about my experience was that I realized that I am blessed to live
through adversity and to teach others to learn and grow from the experiences around them.
What is/was the hardest part?
Sidney: The hardest part is finding the funding to help support the cause.
What was the biggest surprise?
Sidney: The biggest surprise is realizing how many people live through the same issues every day, and they pray for a program that will help teach their children about money, responsibilities,
careers, first aid and safety, counseling and sports.
What new things have you learned as a result of your experience and how have you changed as a result?
Sidney: I have learned that some people want to live better but they are just afraid or do not know how to receive information. Many children and their families are willing to participate in a positive
program, but they are not willing to leave their neighborhood. Note - create an outreach program to meet and greet families in their communities.
I have learned to try to better understand that New York is a multicultural city that has various views and lifestyles, meaning that not all customs and views are the same.
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking of getting involved in philanthropy or volunteering?
Sidney: I would tell them that it is the most exciting learning experience that I have ever encountered. I think that everyone should try it at least once
in their life to learn more about people and their patterns of life and society.
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