In today’s society, communities need aspirations of hope for better times and role models with authority that are willing to make an impact on the world. Sports provide a sense of unity and have this power. Athletes have the choice to become catalysts for the positive and powerful sport and social change movement that is currently on the rise. There has been an array of community outreach programs devised for all levels of athletes, ranging from high school student athletes to professionals.
Sport in Society recognizes that everyone is a role model. High school students, despite their youth, are also admired by others. Community involvement activities performed by high school student athletes can be just as effective and valuable as those being executed by professional athletes. Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Lexington, Kentucky has made athlete community service a priority for a number of years, “it is just expected” said boys' soccer coach Todd Bretz. A few of the teams projects that were achieved were: answering phones at the muscular dystrophy telethon, building houses for Habitat for Humanity and assisting in organizing and working dances for students with disabilities who might not get to go to prom.
College athletes’ participation in service activities are commonly seen and mandated more so than in high school athletics. For the majority of universities, there is some type of community service requirement for each varsity club administered by the athletic department. There are currently many programs that work to place athletes in local communities.
The NCAA CHAMPS/Life Skills Program “was created to support student-athlete development initiatives of NCAA member institutions and to enhance the quality of the student-athlete experience within the context of higher education.” An example of the various affairs that have taken place under CHAMPS/Life Skills: Stevens Institute of Technology teams participating in the Light the Night Walk to support...