David Edward G. Jimenez
Social Inclusion Through A Community Based Youth Sports Program
The Keni Discs is a community based ultimate Frisbee team from San Fernando, Pampanga, Philippines. Composing of young players from various public high schools and colleges, they regularly play this non-contact sport that espouses good spirited behavior. As the players come from low-income families, this study wanted to find out the reasons why members remain with their team and what challenges they face along the way. Through various interviews, discussions and observations of the team, common themes emerged. Happiness, being a part of a second family and a refuge from their daily problems were the reasons imparted by the members of the team for staying. Financial capability, prioritization of life activities and lacking family support were the challenges shared by the members. Although most sports teams focus on the development of physical abilities and competitive performance, in this case, the sport became more of a tool for social integration, a vehicle for growth and development of the youth. Learnings from the Keni Discs can become a case study in forming youth community sports teams and programs in various provinces in the Philippines.