The Kennewick Grid Kids program located in Kennewick, Wash. has earned Gold Level status through USA Football’s League Excellence Program for the 2022 season.
USA Football’s League Excellence Program is a way for youth football organizations to earn recognition for a commitment to raise operational standards and provide a great environment for athletes and their families.
Kennewick Grid Kids earned Silver Level status in 2021. Volunteer Liaison Jon Wright, who has worked in youth football for ten years, claims the league’s tradition and the chance to provide local youth with the opportunity to stay active through the game of football inspires him and other volunteers to build an exceptional program.
“Our league has been around in this area for a very long time,” said Wright. “It was around when I was a kid, and a lot of our board members or coaches played in this league when they were younger. If locals played in KGK when they were younger, it’s almost like a tradition for their kids to play. Their kids play on the same team that they played on and a lot of the times under the same coaches.”
Kennewick Grid Kids aims to provide young athletes and their families with enjoyable and safe experiences. The league approaches this goal by embracing USA Football’s accredited Youth Coach Certification Program.
“What makes us different than other leagues in the area is all of our coaches are USA Football certified,” Wright explained. “We strive for safety and adapting to the game when changes are made, and we try to keep our costs low for families. These factors help us stay successful in the area, keep parents’ minds at ease on the safety side of things and, most importantly, make the game fun and about family.”
Wright felt inspired by the dedicated and effort of Kennewick Grid Kids’ youth coaches, who embraced the challenge of getting certified.
“Seeing coaches strive to be certified before our season started, and their emphasis on safety have been really big for us this year,” said Wright. “I also like the fact that as an organization we always strive to fix problems when they arise and figure out ways to make our organization that much better.”
Wright and the Kennewick Grid Kids program are proud of their Gold Level status and believe it sends a positive message to the local community.
“I think that the emphasis on being a Gold league helped our organization out a lot this year. We are the only league in the area that is Gold Level,” Wright said. “Having our league hit Gold Level shows the community and surrounding communities that we mean business when it comes to safety and adapting to changes within the game of football. Having all our coaches certified is huge and shows parents that we are serious when it comes to the coaching and the safety of the children in this area.”