This week the Beat the Streets (BTS) Philadelphia coaches began their own training in preparation for the 2014-2015 wrestling season! As wrestling season is quickly approaching, we wanted to take this time to present both a quick history of the organization and a brief overview of what is going to be happening for all of our BTS participants this year. This year BTS will sponsor 20 different programs in Philadelphia and the surrounding area working with about 1,100 students’ total! BTS is excited to begin a new program in Allentown this season at Central Elementary School that will be for 3rd- 5th graders. Of the 1,100 students involved in the program, 75 have been chosen to participate in the BTS mentoring program where they receive extra academic support to enable and equip them as they begin the arduous process of applying for high school and college (to find out more about the mentoring program click here). Another exciting change this season involves the Girls Wrestling Team. This year there will be four sites where a female coach will be working directly with girls on the wrestling team, the sites are Mariana Bracetti Academy, Belmont Charter School, Wissahickon Charter School, and George Washington Eagle Youth Wrestling Club. These four sites will host an alongside practice where they will only wrestle other girls. These young ladies will also be given the opportunity to attend all-girl wrestling matches in the early part of 2015. This season our students will participate in almost 90 different wrestling tournaments in the tri-state area. This exposure is beneficial to them on an athletic level but also on a social level as they interact with their peers and work to develop their own sportsmanlike conduct. The vision of BTS is to alter the life’s trajectory for our wrestlers and the coaches and staff are committed to seeing that change happen both on and off the mat. This year many of our students will begin the process of applying for high school and college and they will do it more equipped and prepared because of the lessons that they have learned from wrestling and their coaches at BTS. Beat the Streets success is directly correlated to the generosity of its amazing Board of Directors and other generous donors. If you are interested in donating money to BTS please click here. Don’t forget to check back often for updates about how the season is progressing and interviews with the coaches and wrestlers.