Children & Youth, CYO Athletics

Batter Up: Providing a Space for Kids to Be Kids

by Catholic Charities – June 3, 2021

The pitcher is at the ready, the batter checks her stance. All eyes are on the ball as it whooshes through the air. Crack! That sweet sound of a home run! We have all been waiting for it since the first inning – no – since the first inning two seasons ago. That was the last time that the Catholic Charities CYO Athletics program was able to hold a baseball season before COVID curtailed games last year.

Here on the field, this game is radiating with the excitement of third to eighth-graders. They were ecstatic when they learned that this spring, CYO Athletics would finally be able to host a baseball league. “This is the best part of my weekend!” says the fifth-grade batter after making it around to home base, cheered on by her teammates. “I love that I can see my friends and coaches and play a real game together,” she says. The co-ed league ran on Saturdays from late April through late May at multiple San Francisco Park and Recreation fields.

Other kids also enjoyed a short volleyball and basketball league at the St. Anne School courtyard in mid-May, where games ran simultaneously with plenty of space for parents and fans to watch safely. This was the first time that CYO Athletics has ever held outdoor leagues for these two sports. Tabia Ye, CYO Athletics Coordinator, says, “although it was challenging to get organized, we wanted to serve our youth and create a space for them to get outside and have fun.”

With the baseball, basketball, and volleyball leagues opening this spring, the program is slowly but surely on its way to fully resuming regular activities. Summer kicks off in early June with basketball and volleyball clinics for Kindergarten through eighth grade. “We are looking forward to hosting these summer programs, as well as going back to a regular season in the fall,” says Tabia.

Join me in a cheer and round of applause for Tabia and Catholic Charities CYO Athletics, for providing a space for kids to be kids, get their exercise, connect in person, and have fun outside safely during a time when they need it most.