National

USTA Foundation contributes six figures to renovation of Harvard Park tennis courts

Victoria Chiesa | July 20, 2023


Eight tennis courts in south-central Los Angeles have been refurbished with the help of the USTA Foundation. 

 

World No. 10 Frances Tiafoe was one of the approximately 250 people on hand Thursday at Harvard Park in Los Angeles to help the USTA Foundation cut the ribbon and unveil the revitalized courts, made possible in part due to six figures of financial support from the USTA's national philanthropic arm. 

 

The support is part of the USTA Foundation's national court refurbishment program that is anticipated to provide $3.3 million in funding over the next three years across the country with the goal of renovating 250 courts in under-resourced communities.

“USTAF believes that everyone should have access to the sport, and we work to provide youth in our programs with an opportunity to learn and love the game and pursue their dreams on and off the court,” said Robert Howland, the USTA Foundation's senior director and head of programs and social impact. 

 

“We strive to make tennis a community asset that is open to all, and we hope that not only the youth of the area, but the entire community will enjoy playing on these courts. To achieve this goal, residents can take advantage of free or low-cost programs offered by LA Rec and Parks, PlayLA and the Pete Brown Junior Tennis Program.”

 

Tiafoe is an alumnus of the Junior Tennis Champions Center (JTCC), an NJTL chapter in College Park, Md., and shares many of the USTA Foundation's values.

The 2022 US Open semifinalist joined luminaries including Howland, USTA Southern California executive director Trevor Kronemann and various officials from the city of Los Angeles in Thursday's dedication, where he played tennis and other games with assembled youth, and even participated in a wheelchair tennis demonstration.

 

“I am very excited to participate in the dedication of the Harvard Park tennis courts," Tiafoe said. "I had quality courts to play on when I was growing up, and the USTA Foundation's funding of refreshed courts in under-resourced communities is very important to me."

 

In collaboration with the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks, the courts, located at 1535 W. 62nd Street in Los Angeles, will be accessible to the community and support local tennis programs like the Pete Brown Junior Tennis Program and PlayLA.

 

The Peter Brown Junior Tennis Program is one of nearly 300 National Junior Tennis and Learning (NJTL) chapters in the U.S. that are supported by the USTA Foundation. NJTL, the flagship in- and after-school tennis and education program of the USTA Foundation, provides free or low-cost programming to thousands of under-resourced youth across the country each year in support of their athletic and scholastic endeavors. NJTL was founded as the National Junior Tennis League in 1969 by Arthur Ashe, Charlie Pasarell and Sheridan Snyder with the hope of teaching young athletes the importance of character, getting an education and becoming productive citizens, and used tennis to achieve those goals.

 

Today, the NJTL network touches more than 130,000 under-resourced youth each year, and the USTA Foundation supports these chapters by providing financial grants, scholarship opportunities, curricula, technical assistance and training, and raises money and public awareness through private donations, corporate sponsorships, foundations, and fundraisers.

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