San Jose Stealth stars Colin Doyle and Jeff Zywicki, along with former player Zach Heffner, teamed up with Sticks-2-Schools to bring lacrosse to the California School for the Deaf in Fremont, Calif., on December 9, 2008. The Sticks-2-Schools program implements lacrosse into schools’ physical education (PE) curriculums as a new and fun way to encourage children to become more active.
Sticks-2-Schools is a non-profit, public benefit corporation with the primary goal of teaching skills that promote the healthy balance of children’s minds and bodies. Beginning with the sport of lacrosse, Sticks-2-Schools coordinates and leads a collaboration of sponsors, equipment manufacturers, athletes, teachers and staff to support PE programs in elementary, middle and high schools that will help achieve the goal of reducing childhood obesity.
The California School for the Deaf (CSD) joins more than 60 schools in the San Francisco Bay Area participating in the Sticks-2-Schools program. More than 38,000 students have been introduced to the sport of lacrosse in the program’s four years of existence.
Doyle, Zywicki and Heffner arrived at the CSD campus with sticks in hand ready to provide instruction to ten students who had started lacrosse in their PE class three weeks earlier. The reception from the students was overwhelming. “I have been thinking about joining lacrosse,” one student wrote about the experience. “Well, you guys made my decision final…Yes! It is way better than baseball! Please come again!”
Throughout the 40-minute class, the pros introduced the students to a variety of drills and techniques to perfect their lacrosse skills. The class culminated with a scrimmage with the Stealth players, where the students showed off their new talents. “I was very impressed with their skill level after such a short amount of time with lacrosse,” said Doyle, Stealth Captain. “Even more impressive was their enthusiasm and respect for us and the sport. It was a very gratifying and unique experience working with these great students.”
CSD was founded in 1860 as the first special education program in California. The school moved from Berkeley to Fremont in 1980 and currently enrolls more than 500 students from California and several neighboring states. Many students reside on the 96-acre campus and range in age from 18 months to 22 years.
“The Sticks-2-Schools program is always looking to expand,” says the program’s co-founder and Stealth President and General Manager Johnny Mouradian. “To do that, we need support from sponsors and donors so we can bring the sport of lacrosse to even more students and continue to provide an avenue to keep our children active and healthy.” Sponsorship packages and benefits are available on the Sticks-2-Schools website at www.sticks2schools.org.
Sticks-2-Schools is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Pleasanton, California. More information is available at www.sticks2schools.org or by calling 925-460-8290.