CLEVELAND – The Lake Erie Sharks and the Northeast Ohio Kings Youth Sports Organization have been named the 2018 recipients of the Leo Murphy Field & Equipment Grant, the Cleveland Touchdown Club Charities (CTCC) announced on February 22.
The Field & Equipment Grant, named after longtime Cleveland Browns trainer and Honorary Lifetime Member of CTCC Leo Murphy, is awarded annually to youth football programs in the Greater Cleveland area. Both programs will receive $2,500 to assist with securing the proper equipment and resources they need to play the game of football safely.
“As youth football continues to grow in Northeast Ohio, the Cleveland Touchdown Club Charities remains dedicated to supporting youth programs in creating a safe playing environment for our youth to enjoy the game,” CTCC President Christina Webb said. “It is always a tough decision to choose from so many worthy programs, but we are glad to continue to help grow the game we love.”
The Lake Erie Sharks, established in 2010, are part of the Cleveland Muny Football League and consist of three teams – termite, junior varsity and varsity – and have seen the program double in size over the past seven years. The Sharks plan to use the grant to recondition old helmets while purchasing new helmets and shoulder pads.
“We would love to thank the Cleveland Touchdown Club and the Leo Murphy Memorial Field and Equipment grant sponsors for their generous donation to our organization,” Head Coach LeRon Fullerton said. “This grant will help ensure our youth are properly protected and equipped for the upcoming season and seasons to come. Without this grant, it may not have been possible to provide the necessary quality equipment needed to keep our children on the field.”
The Northeast Ohio Kings provide mentorship, recreational, philanthropic, physical, and educational sports experiences for youth in the inner city of Cleveland, particularly in the Mt. Pleasant area. The organization, in just its second season, fields four teams comprised of youth ages 5 to 14. The Kings plan to use the grant for field equipment, as well as player equipment and helmets.
“The NEO Kings Youth Sports Organization is honored to have been chosen as a recipient of this year’s Leo Murphy Memorial Field and Equipment Grant,” Head Coach Mike Moorman shared. “This grant will help us further our mission by helping our youth in the Mt. Pleasant community become better student-athletes, citizens, and ultimately help save lives. We would like to thank Cleveland Touchdown Club for selecting our organization as a recipient for this grant.”
The CTCC Leo Murphy Memorial Field & Equipment Grant eligibility is limited to 501(c)(3) non-profit youth organizations and local schools in Cuyahoga, Lorain, Medina, Lake and Geauga counties. Grant funds are designated to make improvements to equipment and/or facilities, and to help improve the safety and overall quality of those programs.