Clarance Tobias-Tobias Foundation October 20, 2014Posted by APR in Grind.
Tags: Caribbean, Clarance Tobias, Converse, education, Foundation, running, Tobago, Tobias Foundation, Toco, Triathlete, Trinidad
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I love bringing you articles on athletes that are making a major impact on and off the grind. This athlete is no exception to the rule. Clarance Tobias, a national triathlon athlete from Trinidad, began his career in 2006 competing in duathlon, triathlon, and adventure racing. After competing in 2008, Tobias used his winnings to establish Tobias Foundation. Tobias Foundation is a non-profit organization that is enriching the lives of children in the Caribbean and worldwide. His first mission was buying running shoes for the children of his home community Toco, Trinidad. After seeing Tobias captivate the triathlon community, these kids wanted to follow in his footsteps but were not able to buy the appropriate shoes in order to do so. With this initiative, shoe brand Converse stepped up to the plate and gave additional funding to help Tobias and other kids and expanded across Trinidad.
We had a chance to ask Tobias a few questions regarding his non-profit. Catch our interview below:
OTG:What made you establish this non-profit?
TOBIAS: As a multi-sport athlete, I recognize that in addition to raw talent, having proper sporting clothing, footwear and equipment is essential to peak performance. I have been blessed over the years to have corporate sponsors such as Deloitte assist me in obtaining suitable sporting equipment. However coming from a small rural fishing village in Trinidad – Toco, I see many youths who have raw talent but they are not financially able to obtain proper sporting clothing and equipment.
As a result, the idea for the Foundation was born when I had became 3rd overall and first Trinidad and Tobago Athlete in the 2008 Coast 2 Coast race, which is a grueling running/riding/kayaking race and I decided to use half of my winnings to buy running shoes for the children of my home community Toco, Trinidad, who were keen to follow in my footsteps but were unable to purchase the appropriate footwear.
I was encouraged to expand the project by my colleague Richard Tang, who reflected that, as athletes, most had at least two to three pairs of sport shoes that they would not mind donating if they would be put to good use by others and he felt there were many other athletes in a similar position. We initially started with a project called “Save a Sole” and in 2012, after being one of the winners in a national T&T competition, Ideas to Innovation. We formally incorporated the NGO, Tobias Foundation in late 2012.
OTG: Why are you so passionate? Was it your own experience growing up?
TOBIAS: Yes, my own experience growing up in a rural community is at the heart of my passion to excel and more importantly to give back to society. One of the benefits of growing up in a rural fishing village is that hard work and playing sports is a normal way of life. In my youth, it was not unusual for me to tend to the cows before going to school, go to school, and afterwards go to the beach and surf before running back home.
Unfortunately, one of the problems plaguing my beloved country of Trinidad and Tobago is high crime rate and sadly, many of the crimes are perpetuated by young people.
Having personally seen the benefit of sports and coming from a seaside village, I am passionate to share the guiding principles of our Foundation which are:
- Enhancing the quality of life in the Caribbean through sport, environmental awareness and tourism initiatives
- Facilitating education in environmental awareness and promoting active participation in the development of healthy and environmentally harmonious lifestyles and communities;
- Utilizing programs developed through sport and environment initiatives as vehicles for sustaining Sport Tourism and Eco-Tourism;
- Identifying sporting talent within the Caribbean with elite athletic potential.
OTG: What are your next goals in sports?
TOBIAS: Whilst I have the drive and desire to keep performing in the multi-sport arena, unfortunately, I have been plagued by knee injuries. In 2013, I had knee arthroscopy surgery in London, UK and thought that the issue was solved but unfortunately, I am still having problems so I am selective in the events that I participate in to minimize injury.
As a result, my goals in sports are focused on my Foundation in seeking and encouraging new talent to develop and promote sports in youths not only in the athletics field but also in field of cricket and other areas.
I was fortunate to be in Dar es Salaam Tanzania, Africa for extended periods during 2013 & early 2014 and whilst there, the Tobias Foundation provided several sporting community development initiatives including:
- Training under-privileged youths in Dar es Salaam to swim
- Assisting a local boating sports club in setting up and marketing their club, One Design Laser Club
- Provision of 15 pairs of new football boots, jersey and knapsacks
OTG: What are your upcoming goals for the Tobias Foundation?
TOBIAS: We are currently a small group of dedicated volunteers however we have big plans for the TF. Several activities are planned for upcoming period including the completion of the TF Toco Office and Sporting Gear Storage Area. We recently had one of our sponsors, Deloitte, come out and assist with the painting of a 20 foot storage container that will store the equipment for the youths.
We are also looking to recruit new committed volunteer members, continue with Save-A-Sole including collection drives and distribution events. We are also in the process of establishing a windball cricket club.
As far as fundraising we are looking to team with other sporting programs that embody the TF objectives as well as outreach for corporate sponsorships and i2i marketing initiatives.
As always, we see the good in athletes on and off the grind! If you would like more information on this cause, see below-
For more information visit: www.TobiasFoundation.com
Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tobias-Foundation/701240186574540
Thank you Clarance Tobias for all that you do!
Devon Still & Leah-#LeahStrong October 14, 2014Posted by APR in Grind, NFL.
Tags: #LeahStrong, BeatCancer, Bengals Football, Cancer, Cancer Awareness, Cincinnatti Bengals, Devon Still, Leah Still, NFL, October, Pediatric cancer
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Despite the debilitating antics of a few professional football players (I am not implying guilt or innocence) involving domestic violence, there is one story that is warming the hearts of everyone during the month of October, which happens to be Breast Cancer Awareness month. Devon Still, of the Cincinnati Bengals’ 4 year old daughter Leah is battling pediatric cancer. One minute he was getting ready to attend his daughter’s dance recital and the next he was in the hospital learning of Leah’s condition.
With this new revelation, Still was not able to concentrate on football and his daughter. For any parent this would be devastating and take you on another level mentally. Still was cut from the Bengals but a gesture was seen and heard around the world. Being cut from the team Still would lose his health benefits for his daughter. The Bengals signed him onto the practice squad, giving him his health insurance and the time he needed to be with his daughter. Not only this, but his jersey was sold out in 24 hours after it was stated all proceeds would go to the children’s hospital and to help with Leah’s costs. Every since then, teams like the Patriots and Texans have shown tremendous support for Still and his daughter by sending gifts to uplift Leah’s spirits.
I pray for Leah and all others who have to fight this disease! Let’s #BeatCancer #LeahStrong
You can follow Devon on Twitter and give him well wishes and prayers for Leah @Dev_Still71
Still also gives an update on his daughter via the youtube video below courtesy of CNN & Unguarded:
Jozy Altidore-U.S. Soccer Player July 11, 2014Posted by APR in Grind.
Tags: Community, FIFA, Foundation, Haiti, helping children, Jozy Altidore, Olympic Soccer, soccer, U.S. Soccer Foundation, World Cup
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In lieu of the current FIFA World Cup going on as we speak, I have been trying to find someone that I can write about. After researching some of the U.S. finest, I came across Jozy Altidore. Even though the U.S. team did not make the finals, Altidore is still one who cares about his professional career just as much as the careers of future generations.
The Jozy Altidore Foundation is a non-profit organization who has a common goal of: helping children in need in any way possible. Altidore feels that whether it is by donations, fundraisers, or making an appearance, whatever way to help children who are most in need, he will do it. The foundation was founded in 2011 by Altidore with a hand in many different projects across the world. According to one interview regarding his latest project, Altidore stated, “the latest project is something really simple, trying to build wells to bring fresh water to Haiti”. This among projects like helping poverty stricken communities and giving children hope past the life they see, is enough to congratulate Jozy Altidore for all that he does on the soccer field and off the grind.
Kudos to you Jozy!
For more information, please visit http://jozyaltidore.com/foundation.php.
University of Minnesota (M.A.G.I.C) May 14, 2014Posted by APR in Grind.
Tags: athletes, Big Ten, college, Community, giving back, gold, impact, maroon, student athlete, university, University of Minnestoa
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So many people are familiar with the song “Magic Bus” by The Who back in 1968. Well, University of Minnesota’s Maroon And Gold Impacting the Community! (M.A.G.I.C.) Bus is student athletes all about giving back to the community that supports them in a Big Ten way.
Check out this article…
Banned: Right or Wrong? April 30, 2014Posted by APR in Grind, NBA.
Tags: Adam Silver, banned, comissioner, Donald Sterling, first amendment rights, freedom of speech, NBA, power, race, racial issues, racism
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The NBA’s commissioner, Adam Silver came down on Donald Sterling, owner of the Los Angeles Clippers on yesterday.
If you haven’t heard by now, Mr. Sterling made some unethical comments in a conversation with his biracial girlfriend. The conversation was recorded and was somehow leaked to TMZ and Deadspin. On the recording, a man and woman argue about photos posted to Instagram in which she appears with African-Americans. The man (later admitted to be Sterling) says he doesn’t want the woman bringing any black people to his games. I am for one, an African American woman who will not spend my money with someone that is intolerant of another human being because of their race.
However, I am undecided on the punishment he received. According to the commissioner, Mr. Sterling is banned from the Clippers organization for a lifetime along with being forced to sell the organization to other buyers. This recent event has caused some to be in favor and for others to quote having a “1st amendment right”. All of these are correct, but when will we take responsibility for our actions and positions we hold?
I believe that with a great position comes even greater responsibility. Change starts with us…
What are your thoughts on this?
UNCW Student Athletes Giving Back April 16, 2014Posted by APR in Grind, MLB, NBA, NFL, NHL, Olympics, PGA.
Tags: athlete, charity, giving back, Habitat for Humanity, North Carolina, student, student athlete, UNCW, Wilmington
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I know that this blog is geared specifically for professional athletes. But sometimes, you must acknowledge the college student athletes that are making great choices in community involvement.
The University of North Carolina Wilmington athletic teams, including baseball and soccer teamed up with Habitat for Humanity to volunteer on working on different projects, mostly building new houses for those in need. The UNCW hopes to build a stronger relationship within the community. Check out more about this below:
Hats off to you UNCW!! I love the positivity and what you are doing off the grind!