Event Info

Every Student. Every Session. Every Time. 

  • Transportation from school
  • Training from the communities best coaches and players
  • Life-long mentors
  • Social skills and responsibility education
  • Free Meal

The Session

In partnership with the Waterloo School District, at-risk students are selected based on several factors, including arrest history, behavioral issues at school, and socioeconomic status. On Friday afternoons when middle school is dismissed, students will be transported to the Cedar Valley Sportsplex via Durham School Services. Volunteer coaches will lead the students through warm-ups and stations in groups (approx. 6:1 student/coach ratio).

Stations include:

  • Agility ladders
  • Agility cones
  • Resistance bands
  • Speed parachutes
  • Agility hurdles
  • Footwork and conditioning

Eventually, we’ll work on the fundamentals of football, individual position drills, and learning the game from a student’s perspective. Starting their development at this young age will put them leaps and bounds ahead of peers once they reach high school, and potentially begin molding future collegiate level athletes, once again providing opportunities that may not have been accessible before. This will last from approximately 3:15pm-5:30pm.

The Education

Upon its completion, we’ll break down and facilitate group discussions surrounding social issues using the Coaching Boys into Men curriculum. The curriculum includes comfortable discussions about gender violence, teen dating issues, harassment, bullying and many more. This is used by many high school coaches around the country, and even in some colleges! Dr. Alan Heisterkamp, the Director for the Center for Violence Prevention at the University of Northern Iowa, is a key player as it relates to this piece. 

There are several reintegrated community members who’ve done prison time who have valuable things to offer to young people. These same folks often want to give back and help to prevent kids from going down their same path, they just don’t know how. This would be someone who has been down the wrong road and has a lot to offer to young men and women. Their words have credibility, and the message isn’t just coming from people who have never lived what these students have lived. 

If you or someone you know is interested in speaking to the students please contact us

The Meal

During this discussion period is also when dinner will be served. We know that kids from families that live in poverty often don’t have much food at home, so this eases that burden on the family just a little bit, but is also a draw for the students to participate.

Food will be catered using participating sponsors such as Chick Fil ‘A, and Rodney’s Kitchen. From there, the students will be transported back home via buses, and our evening is complete.

What sets our mission apart from others that may exist is the wide network of justice professionals working together, and the quality of the volunteer coaches involved. I should also mention that I’ve met with UNI’s strength and conditioning coach, Jed Smith, and we’ve spoken about having UNI football players assist as they’re able to in the coaching of the students.

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Thank you to our supporters and partners who are helping make this possible!