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P&G | Team USA Youth Sports Fund Awards $15,000 for USA Fencing Partnership with Fencing In The Schools

11/06/2014, 12:30pm CST
By Nicole Jomantas

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – USA Fencing is pleased to announce a new partnership with Fencing In The Schools that will bring introductory fencing programs to four elementary or middle schools in Colorado Springs.

Through a $15,000 grant awarded by P&G | Team USA Youth Sports Fund, USA Fencing and FITS will identify four schools within the Pikes Peak region that will each launch a six-week fencing program in February 2015. The program is estimated to reach more than 2,000 students.

Founded in 2011 by 2008 Olympic silver medalist Tim Morehouse (New York, N.Y.), FITS is a 501(c)(3)  non-profit organization that has served more than 10,000 students and created school-based fencing programs in seven states. The FITS staff also includes Chief Operating Officer Jeff Spear (Wynantskill, N.Y.), a London Olympic fencer who is training for the 2016 Games, and Maria Cruz Garcia (New York City, N.Y.) who competed in speedskating at the 2006 Games.

“We’re so excited to bring fencing to school children in Colorado in partnership with USA Fencing and P&G,” Morehouse said. “Our goal is to get one million children fencing by 2023 and to impact those children’s lives positively through the sport and our Olympians. This is another important step in that process and schools have already begun showing interest in developing programs throughout the region.”

Each school selected for the program will be given introductory fencing equipment that has been specially designed for students in physical education or after-school settings.

The program will begin with a kickoff assembly at each school that is led by Olympians. Following the assembly, the six-week introductory fencing course will be led by teachers from the school who have been trained by the FITS staff.  

“A key part of USA Fencing’s mission is to grow our sport throughout the nation. Fencing In The Schools has quickly become one of the best grassroots programs in the nation for bringing an Olympic sport into a classroom setting and we’re looking forward to partnering with Tim and his team to reach populations that may never have seen fencing or had the opportunity to try the sport first-hand,” said USA Fencing Executive Director Kris Ekeren (Colorado Springs, Colo.) “We’re also grateful to Procter and Gamble for their commitment to providing wellness and sports opportunities to children and teenagers around the nation as well as to Rick Adams and the NGB Organizational Development staff at the U.S. Olympic Committee for all of their support with this project.”

In the coming weeks, USA Fencing and FITS will announce the schools that have been selected to participate in this pilot program. 

Tag(s): News  Jeff Spear