USTA Northern Commits $405,000 to COVID-19 Recovery
The United States Tennis Association Northern Section (USTA Northern) has allocated $405,000 in funding to support tennis facilities and programming in the region as the industry works to find its footing following broad shutdowns to the COVID-19 pandemic.
USTA Northern is one of the smallest sections in the United States Tennis Association (USTA), yet this amount marks the largest injection of section funding of any of the 17 sections to date. An unprecedented intervention, the section is using a significant amount of its reserves to provide multiple phases of relief.
“Almost everyone who plays our sport has a connection to their local facilities and their local teaching professionals and that’s where people end up falling in love with tennis,” Executive Director Becky Cantellano said. “Those groups are facing unbelievable challenges right now and I’m proud of our board of directors for authorizing the dip into our reserves and of our staff for overseeing an expanded grants process of this magnitude.”
Along with $95,000 made available by USTA Northern’s parent organization, the USTA, the full grant package will be $500,000 and will occur in multiple phases. The first phase is focused mainly on facility recovery and program preparedness, helping reduce the costs of opening and running vital programming safely for the section’s partners throughout Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and northwest Wisconsin.
USTA Northern President Liz Hamburg said the impacts of this shutdown will extend far beyond the short-term.
“This really sent a shockwave throughout the tennis community that’s been felt by our facilities and teaching professionals and the recovery is going to be a marathon,” she said. “We’ve planned well to develop reserves that prepare us for the unexpected. Our board agrees that this crisis requires us to act boldly to support tennis in our section.”