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Local organization helps ease financial burden of playing youth sports

Posted at 11:50 PM, Aug 01, 2017

Six-year-old Jhayden Fines is excited about being a part of a team. 

"I like to play games and football," he said with a shy smile during his team's practice Tuesday evening.

But he wouldn't be on the field in his helmet and pads without some help. His mother, Ivy Fines, said it's difficult making sure all of her children have the same opportunities.

"I have four kids and all of them are in sports. My daughter is in cheer. I have three of them in football and it gets costly," she said. 

With all of her kids participating at the same time; Ivy said she and her husband can easily spend more than $1200 every year. There's registration fees, uniforms and equipment. They live on just her husband's income. 

But for the last two years, the Strong A.R.M. Foundation has helped Jhayden's family with the costs of playing youth sports. 

Sophia Smith is the founder of the Strong A.R.M. Foundation. 

"There's some families that barely make enough to provide for their families, " Smith said. "Let alone the extracurricular enrichment programs like football or soccer or basketball. Things that keep kids out of trouble and keep them active."

Through donations and partnerships the foundation has been able to help hundreds of families.

"We believe it takes a village to raise a child and we believe that this is our village to take care of."

Smith said the foundation believes it's a small price to pay to keep kids active and doing fun and positive things in their communities. 

And it's not just sports. The foundation also helps families with fees for art classes or renting instruments for band or music classes. 

For more information you can go to the website at strongarmfoundation.org