TURNING ‘AT-RISK’ INTO REWARD
Welcome to AFFIRMATIVE ATHLETICS; a non-profit, free, organized sports program with a reading-writing component for ‘at risk’ youth in Los Angeles middle and continuing education court schools. Since its inception in 2005, Affirmative Athletics has mentored over five-hundred incarcerated youth around Los Angeles probation facilities (juvenile hall):
- Camp Fred Miller (Malibu)
- Camp Holton Conservation Camp (Sylmar)
- Camp LAC Afflerbaugh-Paige Camp (La Verne)
- Camp Joseph Paige (La Verne)
Our mission is to provide our youth with an organized positive affirming sports program that instills our four pillar values of dignity, integrity, respect and honor throughout their experience.
Our three month spring basketball and fall flag football programs are spun with a professional sports feel thanks to weekly newsletters that spark excitement and imagination among our youth. The positive culture we create inspires them to operate at their best selves during their journey and helps develop healthy, supportive bonds between teammates, opponents within immediate probation facilities or LACOE communities.
Executive Director Rob Thelusma founded the Affirmative Flag Football program in 2005 at Camp Miller; a Malibu youth probation facility housing Black and Latino teenage boys. The phenomenal success of that inaugural season helped ease with its transition over to Camp Holton in 2006. The program had such a positive impact within its usually oppressive environment, he was inspired to create and implement the Affirmative Athletics Basketball Program in the same year. In short, he realized what the program could be after its first successful year then realized what it should be in the next.
Since then, Affirmative Athletics has had unbelievable success during its years in juvenile facilities while building a solid reputation among probation staff and youth along the way.
Now, we are widening our ever-growing community by serving different Los Angeles middle and continuing education schools to provide their students with a positive affirming structured sports program that will enrich their educational experience.
Affirmative Athletics is a non-profit charity exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.