NEWS | Sept. 21, 2018

Joint Base Charleston Youth Programs earns national designation

Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs

Joint Base Charleston Youth Programs has been designated a Better Sports for Kids Quality Program Provider by the National Alliance for Youth Sports.

This honor, like the Good Housekeeping Seal given to household products that meet high standards, recognizes organizations that have met an equally high standard when it comes to administering youth sports programming.

“In today's market where labels are read and awards are cherished, this designation provides comfort to our patrons, knowing we are providing a program that has met a national standard to ensure the best possible youth sports experience for them,” said Karyn Inafuku, Joint Base Charleston, S.C. – Air Base’s Youth Sports and Fitness Director. “When they understand all that it symbolizes, they are assured and comforted that their child is participating in a quality program that is continuously striving to get better to ensure a safe, positive and child-centered experience by a caring and well-trained staff.”

As part of a Joint Base, Inafuku also works with another Youth Sports & Fitness Director, Mo Artero, from the Naval Weapons Station.

Today’s youth sports climate overflows with programming, making it challenging for organizations to stand out among the crowd, and difficult for parents to gauge which ones can deliver high-quality experiences for young athletes. To help organizations and families, NAYS introduced the “Better Sports for Kids Quality Program Provider” designation. Any organization can apply to be evaluated for the designation, and no cost is involved.

“Parents typically have lots of questions and valid concerns when deciding where to enroll their child,” said John Engh, executive director of NAYS. “We have taken the guesswork out of this important time in a young person’s life. When parents see that a program has the Quality Program Provider designation they will know that we have already asked all the tough questions that they may not have even considered or perhaps were afraid of bringing up.”

Additionally, the designation enables organizations to showcase the quality of their programs and highlight the benefits of children being involved in their offerings.  

To earn the Better Sports for Kids Quality Program Provider designation, a youth sports program must fulfill all the components associated with these five key requirements:

  • Written Policies and Procedures
  • Volunteer Screening
  • Coach Training
  • Parent Education
  • Accountability

Within each of these five areas are important details that can sabotage experiences and ruin young lives that organizations must prove they address in order to earn the designation, such as if written policies exist regarding playing time; if concussion awareness information is disseminated to coaches; if volunteers are subject to background checks and social security number verification; if the organization has a system for receiving and responding to complaints; if the organization solicits feedback to evaluate programs; and more.

“Organizations that earn this designation will stand out within their community for demonstrating that they have taken a proactive approach on some tough issues and are providing youth sports programs of the highest standard,” Engh said. “Parents have a lot of genuine concerns these days and when they see the Better Sports for Kids Quality Program Provider designation they can take comfort knowing their child is in the best place possible to learn and compete in sports.”

For more information about the Better Sports for Kids Quality Program Provider designation, visit nays.org/quality; email nays@nays.org; or call (800) 729-2057.