Progression Athletics International (PAI) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. We use athletics as a platform to positively influence at-risk youth in our community and around the world by teaching life skills, accountability, leadership, the importance of education, healthy lifestyle choices, and cultural diversity.
Since PAI was established in 2011, we have developed several solid relationships in the U.S. and around the world with organizations who share a common interest of positively impacting at-risk youth.
We strategically partner with these organizations who house, nurture and work with the children we want to influence. Our mission with these partners is to take their recreation department to the next level with our clinics and programs. We have had great success and solidified these relationships over the years.
The foundation of PAI is our sports clinics that we use to engage youth and build positive relationships with those who participate. They are comprised of a free two-hour clinic for the at-risk youth we serve, where we bring in volunteers from the local community who encourage the children to participate in the activities. The clinic frequency varies on location and availability. Some of our locations have over ten events a year and other having four events.
We have structured and created clinics that emulate the same format as a paid clinic. Our goal here is to allow children who have not had an opportunity to participate in recreational leagues or camps to have the experience free of charge. The majority of the time, the clinics have college athletes coming out to give back to their community.
At the end of the clinic, we do a trophy ceremony where we hand out awards to children who exhibited the values we were trying to teach such as teamwork, communication, leadership, and encouragement among others.
We serve a population that is under-served and often does not have the resources needed to participate in sports. We want to fix this problem and provide every child an equal opportunity to participate in sports, join a team, and build personal skills.
Our main goal is to provide athletic supplies needed in order for children to participate in sports year round. It is proven that children that participate in sports are less likely to get into trouble, get pregnant or get involved in other negative life changing situations.
Some of the items we provide are athletic t-shirts, shoes, basketballs, footballs, soccer balls, goals, ball pumps, cones, score boards, and sports bags. We have provided over 6,000 sports items around the world since 2011 and continue to help meet needs.
One of the programs we established in 2014 is a trophy recycling program that uses old trophies and refurbishes them for our events.
The children have thrived in this program and have a deep desire to be awarded a trophy in front of their peers. We use these trophies to encourage positive behavior that we strive to teach at our events. Some awards are:
– Inspirational Award
– Sportsmanship Award
– Leadership Award
– The PAI Award (MVP award)
The PAI Olympics
PAI has put on an annual Olympic Games at Casa Pacifica since 2012. We believe that one of the greatest ways to work with the children is through community athletics events. So what better way to use sports than through a fun filled day of competitions, team relays, and food! In 2014, we welcomed over 70 volunteers to the annual event and welcomed the kids and staff of Casa Pacifica to a BBQ.
We know that a powerful tool to reach at-risk youth around the globe is athletics since it is a universal language. We know this from firsthand experience because PAI founder, Shane Hanson, has been on numerous trips around the world that have used athletics to communicate and inspire these children.
We accept applications from all over the United States and select a group of volunteers that want to embark on this journey with us. In 2014, we traveled to Manila, Philippines and Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic for the first time. This trip is a perfect opportunity for volunteers to get involved internationally with other like-minded individuals. We welcome all types of volunteers from college athletes to team moms.
On these trips we not only bring athletics supplies, but we also bring needed items with the organization we are partnering with. We bring items including; diapers, clothes, books, school supplies, baby formula, coloring books, crayons, toys, and more.