Success4Kids plays a leading role in raising community awareness of the need for structured after-school programs. Without our after school program, these teenagers, who may not be able to afford a more expensive after school activity, search for alternative recreation during the time of day that is the most dangerous for teenagers- after school. Statistically, uninvolved teenagers are more likely to engage in behaviors that put them and others at risk immediately after school dismissal. The lower grade rate in Phoenix High School's demonstrates the need for programmatic intervention, structure and oversight. For additional information visit the National Survey of Children’s Health website at www.nschdata.org.
Become a Mentor
At Success4Kids, youth are encouraged to excel in 3 areas – Skill, Attitude and Academic Achievement.
In our Skills for Life portion of the after-school program, the role of coaches extends beyond the handball courts. All coaches are exposed to mentor training, and receive formal orientation to the “40 Developmental Assets” of the Search Institute.
Coaches follow a formal character-building curriculum, which includes information and activities about:
• Common courtesies, such as behavior at the dinner table
• Good personal hygiene
• Good health habits, such as avoiding smoking and drinking
• Avoiding the use of street drugs
• Respect for others
• Community service
All youth (and adult volunteers) commit themselves to a set of standards. They are encouraged to memorize and practice these standards:
• We greet each other everyday with a smile and a handshake to strengthen the relationship between us.
• We honor and respect each other so we address one another with the proper language and speech.
• We value the space of ourselves and others and are careful not to intrude or injure each other.
• We are mindful of what is true and strive to be honest in word and deed.
• We treasure our rich heritage and hold the culture of all people in high regard.
• We strive to reflect our beauty both inwardly in our understanding and outwardly in our appearance.
Handball is considered by proponents to be "The Perfect Game". Handball develops cardiovascular endurance, speed, agility, balance, flexibility, hand-eye coordination and strength. Strategy, total concentration and patience are all important elements to successful play.
• Handball has been rated the #1 competitive sport for overall conditioning by the President’s Council on Physical Fitness.
• Sports such as handball that use both sides of the body help to develop both sides of the brain and aid in young people’s learning capabilities.
• Size makes no difference on a handball court. All youth have an opportunity to succeed.
• The game promotes social competencies. The concepts of fair play and honor are embedded in the rules of the play for handball.
• Handball is a lightning fast calorie-buster. It is estimated that the average player uses 600 calories in an hour of play.
History of Handball
The earliest records of people using their hands to play ball games against a wall was 1427 in Scotland & 1527 in Ireland. The earliest records of people playing handball are 1700 in Ireland & 1742 in England. In 1880, in America, (Ben Thum reports that "...a combination pub and handball court, the Shamrock Saloon and Ball Alley at 543 Market St. as the oldest published record of a handball court in America: San Francisco City Directory 1851.")
The original ball used was made of tightly rolled cloth pieces stitched together and this would have given little bounce against a wall. The game of Jeux de Paume with the addition of larger and longer gloves finally became the game of tennis. The hand versus racquet controversy was commented on by Erasmus the Dutch Philosopher in 1524, "You may sweat more but the game is prettier when played with the hand."
Success4Kids is a Phoenix-based youth outreach organization that conducts after-school programs in local high schools.
The At-Risk Youth After-School Activity Program has been promoting personal success through the sport of handball for eight years. Without our program, high school youth would be uninvolved during the time of day that is considered to be the most dangerous for teens: after school.
The majority of the youth in our program are South Phoenix high school students between the ages of 14 and 19. Ninety percent of our participants are Latino, and, although predominantly male, a growing number of females have begun to participate.