More than $1,000,000 in grants supporting under-served youth through community tennis programs has been doled out by the USTA Foundation (USTAF) to 105 National Junior Tennis & Learning (NJTL) chapters. And with it, 30,000 kids are projected to pick up a racquet for the first time in an era where tennis participation is on the rise.

From the Sloane Stephens Foundation in Compton, Calif. to the Central Lincoln County YMCA in Damariscotta, Maine, the selected grantees from Cycle 1 represent projects across 36 states and the District of Columbia. With the goal of building character, improving wellness and achieving academic excellence, chapters are expected to topple 56,000 hours of education and 95,000 hours of tennis activities.

“These grants are a reflection of the tremendously impactful work that NJTL chapters do every day in local communities,” said USTA Foundation President Kathleen Wu.

Bailey with the USTAF's Dan Faber (Executive Director) and Jeff Harrison (Director, Fund Development).

Bailey with the USTAF's Dan Faber (Executive Director) and Jeff Harrison (Director, Fund Development).


One shining example of this impactful work is how NJTL programming cultivates future leaders. Take junior player Tory Bailey and his collaboration with the Pete Brown Junior Tennis Program (PBJTP), one of the Cycle 1 grant recipients.

Unable to compete in the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) as an independent player due to his state's current rules and regulations for both charter and home school students, Bailey joined forces with PBJTP. This "doubles team" developed a community tennis program for non-traditional high school players and a plan encouraging the CIF to revise its current entry process policy. By taking action, Bailey became a voice for inner-city students in low-income environments looking for equal opportunities to compete. Set to attend Howard University on a tennis scholarship, Bailey was recognized for his efforts with the Billie Jean King Youth Leadership Award.

Applications for Cycle 2 launch on August 2, with grants ranging from $2,500 to $40,000.