And the winner is…
Angled End Athletics is thrilled to announce the winner of the 2011 Angled End-Run Website Giveaway contest:
OFA is a non-profit that organizes football camps for hundreds of kids each year, led by former University of Oregon players and current NFL players. Besides helping kids build knowledge and skills around fitness, diet and athletics, OFA also helps kids create programs to benefit their communities.
Angled End Athletics is thrilled to be able to work with an organization that has had such a positive impact on communities in the Pacific Northwest region. Check the URL above in January to see a brand-new web presence for OFA, and read their contest essay below to learn more about the past, present and future of the organization…
“Greatness is knowing it takes a team
to reach the top of your game.”
I have always dreamed of starting a movement and OFA is knocking at that door. Our only missing component is an exceptional website that will allow us to share this movement with others…
In the summer of 2009, OFA had its very first camp featuring NFL quarterback (and Oregon alumni) Dennis Dixon. The camp brought in close to 100 kids. Not a record by any means, but we were impressed and excited nonetheless. At this point, OFA consisted of five Oregon football alumni: Brent Haberly, Garren Stong, Jaison Williams, Dennis Dixon and myself. OFA was still in the development stage, but we had a clear vision; a vision that included holding camps throughout the northwest as a way to positively influence the lives of youth in our community.
Over the next two years we continued to put on camps. We were astounded by the continued growth and overwhelming positive feedback we received from parents and coaches, and completely humbled by the appreciation expressed by the kids. Feedback from one parent in particular, Rick Heidrick, resonated with me and has remained in my mind ever since:
“OFA has done wonders for Bailey’s confidence. Before his game he said ‘I want to make Ryan and Brent proud’. Thank you so much for all you have done.”
After hearing similar feedback from other appreciative parents we felt compelled to do more. We began to think about other ways for OFA to enhance the lives of youth, using football as a vehicle. In addition to providing camps run by former D-1 athletes and NFL stars, OFA wanted to incorporate a way for the kids to give back to their communities.
OFA’s mission is to enhance the lives of youth through sports training and mentoring. We aim to supply each child with the tools to be successful, both on and off the field, by providing life skills, academic guidance and support, despite the consequences of geographic, financial or demographic circumstance. This includes providing each child with relevant information about goal setting, nutrition and fitness. Overall, we want to ensure that every child has the opportunity and resources to gain the skills and techniques necessary to become a strong and successful student athlete, no matter their financial circumstances.
Further, OFA wanted to provide a way for the kids to give back and make a difference in their communities. As such, we created the OFAM project, where M represents a Movement in leadership. The OFAM project serves to help young athletes understand the importance of hard work, giving back to their communities and being a part of something bigger than themselves. As part of the camps, we work with each child to develop personalized Community Service Action Plans that instill an importance in civic responsibility at a young age. As an additional incentive to create these plans, OFA is establishing an education savings plan that will be rewarded to kids with the greatest impact.
OFA became an official 501(c) 3 not-for-profit in May 2011. Shortly after, we put on our first fundraiser — OFA vs. MTV’s “The Buried Life” charity camp and celebrity game. The fundraiser was open to kids and families, where kids could participate in the football camp, and families could watch the celebrity game and learn about OFA’s mission, while interacting with the players and coaches. The event brought in over 400 kids and turned out to be a huge success.
The feedback received from this event was again overwhelming, and just as inspiring as ever, as evidenced by this comment from Elise Gibbs, a parent of one of the kids who attended the camp:
“The Gibbs family was there and we loved it! Thank you so much for putting this on, we can’t wait to do this again! Great event and great cause!”
OFA’s future is bright. Since our event in August there have been numerous Oregon alumni and NFL stars coming onboard to support the mission. Further, interest in OFA from students, parents and coaches has continued to grow, and we continue to establish key partnerships with various businesses and non-profits throughout Oregon to further enhance the impact and presence of OFA.
Having Angled End Athletics develop a professional website for OFA would undoubtedly help to highlight our mission. A website represents the face of an organization, and serves to convey the skills, resources and support we have to offer our youth, as well as the community as a whole. Having a professionally developed website will ultimately enhance the accessibility of information and resources, and will help to incite interest in OFA’s message to allow us to reach a greater number of people. The concept is simple: the more people we can reach, the more lives we can change. Angled End Athletics can help us to change these lives.
- Ryan DePalo · Founder, Oregon Football Association