Youth Development Association, Inc. (YDA) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. YDA conducts a Pathway to Greatness program that promotes the advancement of At-Risk Children and Youth, with a focus on growth opportunities for youth. YDA fosters quality education through intervention, diversity, performing arts, life skill development including community and citizenship responsibility and health targeting obesity/fitness through tennis & golf. Since 1991, over three hundred students have completed or are currently in universities around the county. Our fiftieth tennis student received a full scholarship to the University of Alabama in Huntsville. Though open to all, YDA programs are especially aimed toward under-served youth and communities in Huntsville and Madison County. Proudly, YDA has impacted every Huntsville, City of Madison, and Madison County High School Tennis Team.
Program Description - Pathway Schools:
Lakewood Elmentary - McNair Middle - Jemison High School
Morris Elementary - Westlawn Middle - Butler High School
YDA proposes to provide tutorial/intervention services and enrichment activities to students attending Huntsville’s “persistently low-achieving” schools. Our target schools have been identified by the State Education Dept. as failing schools.
Our target neighborhoods include but are not limited to Huntsville Housing Authority (public housing).
We train & hire At-Risk students including those majoring in education from The University of Alabama in Huntsville, Oakwood University, Alabama A&M University to tutor struggling students in reading, science and mathematics. We will target students who are not proficient as well as those who were proficient by marginal measures. Educational curriculum and activities in reading, math, and science are central to YDA’s tennis and golf. In addition to tutoring, we will afford these students the opportunity to engage in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) modules developed by UA Huntsville Minority Graduate Student Association and National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE). We will monitor the students’ progress and collaborate with teachers, administration and parents. YDA will hire an outside evaluator to hold YDA accountable as he/she documents academic and personal performance/growth from students test data, grades and other survey information. The evaluator will report findings to YDA, schools, and HHA.
We integrate CORE Life Skills/Values through tennis and golf lessons developed by the United States Tennis Association and the Professiona Golf Association. Students will develop the fundamentals of tennis and golf, while developing their character and leadership skills. Hirees must be junior or senior high students or college/adults living in public housing. YDA’s summer jobs for at-risk high school students require attendance to the Youth Leadership & Diversity Conference held at UAHuntsville. Tennis and golf coaches tie in lessons on good sportsmanship, honesty and integrity, self monitoring and self assessment, and teamwork. Lastly, but certainly not least in this component of the program, we plan to address childhood obesity, by providing this physical activity twice a week while educating students on nutrition and health. YDA is North Alabama’s only National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) Chapter of the United States Tennis Association (USTA). Together with the USTA and the White House initiative lead by Michelle Obama, YDA is the local chapter of “Lets Move”.
The Impact: 1300 Participants
All Huntsville Title One Schools will be impacted. This initiative will reduce dropout rates and increase college attendance. It will reduce discipline problems in homes, schools, and society. Successful schools give pride to students, parents, communities and businesses. Improved schools enhance the workforce for the future.
Time Line: 6 Jan 2015 - 6 Nov 2015
Our sites are Lee High School, the Wellness Center of Alabama A&M University and Oakwood University. YDA continues to offer after-school,weekend services/activities and summer camps