You've probably been told "it's only a game" by someone hoping to ease your pain after a devastating loss.
Sure, a single match or contest will not change the course of the rest of your life. But the sports you play as a youth and in high school are significant. They build character and teach life lessons. They shape who you are, where you go and what you do in the future.
Whether you play to earn a scholarship or just to stay active, sports matter. The problem is, sports participation among youth and high school athletes is at risk as school districts cut athletic budgets.
An estimated 60 percent of children nationwide now must pay a fee to play sports, and it's predicted that by 2020, 27 percent of U.S. public schools will be without interscholastic sports programs.
The DICK'S Sporting Goods Foundation is stepping up to the plate with its Sports Matter initiative, a program than will match community donations up to $2 million through a new crowd-funding platform to save teams facing financial challenges.
Here's how it works:
As part of the Sports Matter program, participants must raise half the funding they need to sustain their team for a year. Once that goal is met, the DICK'S Sporting Goods Foundation will provide the other half of the funds.
The deadline is fast approaching—applications close Friday, March 21. Visit the official Sports Matter site today for more information and to register your team or donate to the program.
Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock