For over 40 years, Coach Lorraine Alexander has helped the children of Co-Op City through the New York Junior Tennis & Learning (NYJTL) Community Tennis Program (CTP). CTP provides free tennis instruction to youth between the ages of five and 18 from trained coaches in schools and public parks in all 51 New York City Council districts year-round.
Coach Lorraine, along with her late-husband Milton Alexander, started the NYJTL Co-Op City site 40 years ago because of the powerful and positive impact that the sport had on their lives. As a child, Ms. Lorraine always loved tennis, but it was not something readily available in her community. Eventually, after finding someone willing to teach her tennis, Ms. Lorraine met her husband on the courts of Co-Op City and decided to teach tennis to the children in order to give them an opportunity that they would not have had otherwise.
Ms. Lorraine believes that, “if you engage children in something constructive, they will never get involved in anything destructive”, therefore creating a space for children to build character in her community was important to her and her husband.
Dick’s Sporting Goods Foundation (DSG Foundation), through their “Sports Matter” initiative, acknowledge Ms. Lorraine’s dedication in creating a positive and safe space for the community at Co-Op City. DSG Foundation’s “Sports Matter” initiative recognizes that “sports build character, increase confidence, motivate kids to stay in school and aim for higher education; teaching life lessons that extend well beyond the playing field”.
At this year’s Virtual Leadership Luncheon, NYJTL announced the DSG Foundation’s generous donation of $100,000 to the NYJTL Community Tennis Program, so that coaches like Ms. Lorraine can continue to develop the character of young people though tennis.
NYJTL is honored to be select and proud of the recognition of Coach Lorraine and her lifetime of service to children. This grant represents a future and a new beginning for children in Co-Op City and beyond in NYC. Good Morning America covered the DSG Foundation’s support on Giving Tuesday, December 1.
NYJTL would like to thank the DSG Foundation for their donation to the Community Tennis Program and thanks Ms. Lorraine for her dedication to the kids of Co-Op City.