NORTHSIDE YOUTH ORGANIZATION
For over 70 years, the Northside Youth Organization (NYO) has fostered the growth and development of young athletes as part of the North Atlanta community. Beginning with football in 1949, and along the way adding baseball, basketball, softball and cheerleading, NYO has grown to become one of the largest intra-league youth sports programs in the country.
Today we serve nearly 3,500 area families and 5,000+ children registered annually. Most of NYO’s success is the direct result of engaging nearly a thousand volunteers annually – both parents and non-parents, all of whom are introduced to NYO’s Positive Coaching and Parenting Alliance, an initiative that ensures an enriching and supportive athletic environment for our kids.
As a dedicated community partner and longtime lessee of the City of Atlanta, NYO maintains high quality playing fields and a gym at Chastain Park as well as at numerous facilities at local partner schools and churches. Our inclusive environment offers multiple ways for the community’s youth to play at NYO including through our needs-based scholarship program and our Christopher League for children with disabilities.
Research shows that children ages 6 to 11 are not meeting the U.S. Surgeon General’s daily recommendation for moderate physical activity. National experts have proposed a solution to address deficits in physical activity, specifically in programs that allow players to sample multiple sports until their preteen years, when emphasis shifts to higher levels of development and skills and activities that build physical literacy. These facts suggest that programs such as NYO play a critical role in providing a valuable service. NYO is one of the area’s few organizations that offer a high-quality program allowing participation in multiple sports for players of all levels.
Beginning with a survey of all of NYO’s current families in the fall of 2014, and following with extensive input from focus groups that included community stakeholders, partners, volunteers and coaches, and an extensive operational review, NYO’s board of directors has developed a detailed strategic plan to guide operations and decision-making over the next three years. The plan is designed to strengthen and leverage NYO’s already quality programs, while addressing opportunities and challenges that have accompanied growth and success. As we strive to provide a premier community-based youth sports experience, implementation of this strategic plan will require extensive community engagement from parents, volunteers and partner organizations. The plan is built on the foundation of Four Major Strategic Themes:
IMPROVE THE PLAYER EXPERIENCE
- Strengthen programs, coaching, and skill development.
BALANCE QUALITY AND GROWTH
- Effectively manage resources for the best experiences for our players, families, and community.
DEVELOP AND SUPPORT LEADERSHIP STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS
- Provide a platform for leveraging our outstanding people.
STRENGTHEN COMMUNICATIONS AND INFRASTRUCTURE
- Engage internally and externally to ensure a sustainable future.
NYO STATEMENT ON DIVERSITY & INCLUSION (2020)
For over seventy years NYO’s mission has been to be a premier athletic program where young people learn life lessons and athletic skills through team sports that emphasize character building, sportsmanship, healthy competition and positive coaching as part of a family friendly and safe community. In the world of athletics, teammates from all races, religions, orientations and economic levels work together in pursuit of team goals.
In addition to already having a board consisting of 40% minorities and 12.5% ethnic minorities, we have created tangible action steps for our community. We have identified the following action items and urge others in our community to provide perspectives and suggestions on how NYO can work to build a more inclusive environment for all of our families.
1. We will commit that the NYO Board of Directors is made up of 20% ethnic minorities by the end of 2022, including a Diversity Chair position that has already been filled. Additionally, NYO will seek to identify ways in which NYO can further share our resources, staff, and volunteers with other City of Atlanta Parks and Recreation centers where needed.
2. An affiliated organization, Friends of Chastain, has for two decades funded the costs for participating at NYO for underprivileged minority families who would not otherwise have the opportunity. NYO will be establishing an annual fund during the 2020-21 season. As part of the annual fund, there will be a formal process for members of our community to participate in donating to the Friends of Chastain scholarship fund NYO will commit a minimum of 10% of the proceeds received in the Annual Fund each year towards the Friends of Chastain Scholarship Fund
3. NYO will develop a comprehensive marketing plan that uses our website, social media and other marketing platforms to support the organization’s mission of providing a premier athletic program for the diverse community we serve within the city of Atlanta.
NYO will always work to ensure our program is a symbol of tolerance, equity, and fairness.