Let’s talk resiliency and how we’re constantly reminded of it through the organizations we serve.

A few Good Sports teammates, plus our amazing spokesperson Jesse Palmer, took to the gridirons of New York City to meet the young men and coaches of the Lions Football Club. Like many coaches, program president and head coach Tim Cavanaugh focuses on providing a positive outlet to local youths. Additionally, Cavanaugh and his fellow coaches run a second program within their organization: Run to Daylight, where Lions’ athletes who prove themselves on the field, and in the classroom, are matched with prep schools through the New York area for possible scholarship opportunities.

“You’re fighting an uphill battle when it comes to football,” Cavanaugh said. “I’ve got 38 kids on the roster and the median income in our area of New York is $16,000. It’s people like Good Sports that keep up alive.”

Even with Cavanaugh’s complimentary words, it was our team that felt rejuvenated from watching a practice. We learned about the player who takes the ferry to and from Staten Island, adding an hour each way on top of practice. We got to see the boys prep their own field by picking up after another league’s soccer game.

“How Coach Cavanaugh is working with his team is nothing short of incredible,” said Kelly Patterson, Good Sports’ New York Market Director. “It’s always our pleasure at Good Sports to support the efforts of extraordinary coaches and programs like that of Coach Cavanagh’s Lions and see kids working hard to achieve their goals and dreams through sports.”

The Lions definitely got the chance to discuss their goals and dreams with Jesse before the night was through. After  he helped us hand out all the essentials, including compression pants, receiver gloves and mouth guards, Jesse spent some time talking inspiration with the team. The boys had great questions for Guest Coach Jesse, asking about everything from locker room hijinks to what it truly takes to succeed. The boys really leaned in to hear Jesse speak about sacrifice: your team depends on you, so commit to each and every teammate on the field.

It reminds us that sacrifice is important, but some things can’t be overlooked. No youth athlete should have to sit on the sidelines because their family can’t afford a football helmet or fitted cleats. How can we expect the best from the next generation if we don’t set them up with the basics? If one kid can sacrifice over an hour to transport himself to and from practice, the rest of us can certainly answer that call with quality equipment.