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Illuminating Futures: Transforming Illinois Youth with Purpose

Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova, two legendary tennis superstars, share a remarkable bond that goes beyond their fierce on-court rivalry and enduring friendship. Both athletes demonstrated incredible resilience by triumphing over their battles with cancer, inspiring countless individuals around the world with their courage and determination.

Their similarities extend even further, as both Chris and Martina have proven to be dedicated philanthropists with a passion for giving back to their communities and making a positive impact on the lives of others. One of the causes closest to their hearts is Laureus, Sport for Good – a partner of the USTA/Midwest Tennis & Education Foundation and an organization that leverages the power of sports to create social change and uplift disadvantaged youth.

Laureus envisions harnessing the power of sports to empower children in overcoming the harsh realities of violence, discrimination and disadvantages they face daily. With an unwavering commitment to fundraising, Evert and Navratilova champion a cause that transforms the lives of youth through tennis and education.

The USTA/Midwest Tennis & Education Foundation (MTEF) has partnered with Laureus in Illinois to champion tennis as a sport with the power to create positive change in the world and combat violence in overlooked and underserved areas called R3 zones. Through the Restore, Reinvest and Renew (R3) Program, Illinois has taken a groundbreaking step towards addressing long-standing issues of underinvestment and harm.

Over the past year, MTEF has worked with non-profit organizations in these regions to establish safe and inclusive tennis programs. Our goal is to strengthen our partnership with Laureus, leveraging data collection and analysis, to strategically plan and expand our outreach efforts in 2024. By doing so, we aim to make an even greater impact in transforming lives and fostering a safer, more inclusive environment for the youth in these communities.

MTEF estimates that we have impacted more than 2,200 youth in these underserved communities, and we need your help to do more.

If you’re looking to make a difference, consider donating to MTEF. Your financial support will go a long way to help non-profit programs in the vital R3 zones, while also advancing the shared mission of Laureus and MTEF to connect the joy of tennis with educational opportunities and enhance the lives of youth and all persons with disabilities.

Together, we can give kids a safe place to play.


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