Access to Sports

Beyond Sport

Since 2008, youth sports participation across the United States has significantly dropped. In that time, nearly 3 million fewer children have played basketball, soccer, track and field, baseball, football and softball. This is worrisome because sports is so important to development, including helping kids improve their health and perform better in school.

To help reverse that decline, ESPN is investing in programs that remove the barrier to entry in youth sports. We strive to enable greater access to sports by:

  • Building capacity for nonprofits to develop sports curriculum

  • Acquiring and distributing sports equipment to enable youth sports programs

  • Creating or refurbishing safe spaces to play sports

Since ESPN began its Access to Sports program in 2015, the company has enabled 1.3 million people access to sports. This has been made possible by providing support to nonprofits aimed at getting youth, particularly underserved youth, into sports. These include:

  • DonorsChoose.org Access to Sports program

  • Good Sports

  • LISC's Replay program

  • Love.futbol through the Safe Spaces program

  • National Parks and Recreation Association's Meet Me at the Park program

  • USA Football's Heads Up Football program

  • USTA Foundation's National Junior Tennis League