Erie County, NY- Legislator Patrick Burke is announcing the start of his Youth Sporting Goods Drive on the steps of Bishop Timon-St. Jude High School today. The drive will collect lightly used sports equipment for children in need.
“There was once a time when neighborhood kids would grab a ball and play outside for hours. In recent years, this has become less and less prevalent. Nowadays, when a child wants to play a sport, they need to join an official team whether at a school, community center, or town league. What this also means is that the nearly free options for parents to have their kids enjoy the benefits of a sport are decreasing, and it can be expensive to purchase all of the equipment a child needs to play. Especially for households that have more than one child playing more than one sport. In 2015, 32% of parents whose households made less than $50,000 a year cited the high cost of sports as a reason their child couldn’t continue playing” Burke said.
Schools and community centers across the area are partnering with Legislator Burke’s office to collect items for those in need. Items can be dropped off until November 15th.
“In many cases, the cost of equipment is limiting the opportunity for youth in sports. Sports help kids remain active, establish a sense of self-esteem and learn how to work with others to achieve a common goal. Unfortunately, for some parents the cost of equipment is so expensive their children can’t play sports. Studies have shown travel-team sports can cost parents as much as $2,266 a year, per child. In today’s economy where costs are rising as wages stagnant, we as neighbors need to be there for each other. No child should be denied the opportunity to play a sport because they can’t afford it.” Burke said.