July 25th, 2021 / Source: The Bizz USA
By Haarika Kalahasti and Adya Kumar
Although COVID-19 has negatively impacted many small businesses, individuals have begun to step up to promote change. Another inspirational organization that emerged during this pandemic is Future Athletes Association.
Future Athletes Association (FAA) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that aims to assist the sports journey of future athletes. To do so, they aim to collect athletic equipment, expand injury prevention knowledge, and promote sports participation in high schools. The nonprofit was created by a rising high school senior Jason Cai, from Southern California, who has a passion for both sports and business. He suffered from a few knee injuries while playing sports, and according to him, while resting, he felt terrible because he couldn’t play and realized how important sports were to him. After research, he found that 50% of injuries can be prevented with knowledge and equipment, and so, he decided to create Future Athletes Association to provide young athletes with the knowledge and equipment they need to prevent injuries. With FAA, he hopes to reach a nationwide audience to contribute to reducing the rate of injuries.
As mentioned earlier, to prevent sports-related injuries, they raise donations to collect and buy equipment, educate on injuries and prevention, and encourage sports participation. They collect donations for protective athletic equipment for schools that don’t have them or use monetary donations to buy low-income schools. So far, they’ve donated over 200 pieces of equipment, and their volunteers have made over 6,000 masks to support high school sports teams in California! In addition to the immense equipment aspect, Future Athletes Association also hosts guest speaker events to educate students on sports injuries and injury prevention. Some of their past events include their webinar with Anthony Watson, a former olympian, and Dr. Carlo L. Sayo, an orthopedic physical therapist. They plan to host many more guest speaker events with more experienced professionals in the future! Lastly, through community service events like fundraisers, they collect donations and equipment to distribute. As of now, the Future Athletes Association is mainly based in the California area but has some chapters both nationally and internationally. They have chapters or school clubs of the FAA, where members and chapter heads work collaboratively to fulfill FAA’s mission locally.
Interested and want to get involved? Luckily, Future Athletes Association has both leadership and membership positions available! If you’re solely interested in becoming a member, apply here! If you’re interested in creating a branch of Future Athletes Association in your local community, apply here!
The Bizz USA recommends that you check out Future Athletes Association and get involved in any way you can, whether donating, volunteering, becoming a member, or starting a chapter! Their passion for educating and assisting future student-athletes across the globe is something the world needs a bit more of, and it’s impressive to see young leaders like Jason Cai make a difference.
Check out Future Athletes Association here:
Extra Segment: Entrepreneur’s Corner with Jason Cai
A mini excerpt from the interview with the founder of Career Bound, Jason Cai (JC), interviewed by Haarika Kalahasti (HK), the Founder of The Bizz USA.
Q (HK): What has been your biggest challenge and biggest reward?
A (JC): “Our biggest challenge was functioning virtually. Because of COVID-19, we had no in person events. We planned on doing youth sports camps, fundraising, and other in person events. However, with the COVID situation slightly improving, we are planning to potentially host an event, although this is subject to change. Our biggest reward thus far has been actually donating to lower income athlete teams. One organization actually donated $3,000, which we greatly appreciate and value.
Q (HK): “If you had to give advice to aspiring, young entrepreneurs, and business owners, what advice would you give?”
A (JC): “If you’re an entrepreneur, your team is your most important aspect. Don’t get friendship involved. When I started, I tried to get some friends involved, but it was unprofessional and didn’t work out. Before you start, pick the best team and the best people to surround yourself with and then that’s how you can succeed with the organization. Another piece of advice is to keep going. If you fail or lose followers, keep going and working hard. "