Brainerd Youth Business “Sports 4 Life” Officially Open To The Public
When most people think of starting a new business, a group of kids isn’t who you would think is running the show, but that’s exactly the case with the new “Sports 4 Life” business that had its grand opening in Brainerd today.
The group was formed from the partnership of Junior Achievement and the Brainerd Lakes YMCA. The kids are selling slightly used sporting equipment and then donating the proceeds to a new nonprofit, putting sporting goods in the hands of low-income kids.
Community members and businesses have helped out Sports 4 Life, but don’t get the wrong picture: it was the kids who made this business start, and it was meant to be as realistic to the working world as possible.
“Everything has pretty much been their ideas and my role has been more just to rein it in and make sure that it is realistic [for] what we’re asking for,” said Riverwood Senior Credit Analyst Josh Rardin.
“We wanted it to be just like a real business – there’s always the potential that it could fail, but we wanted them to experience the whole range of what it would go through,” said YMCA/Junior Achievement Organizer Shane Riffle.
“To the best of my knowledge, nobody else in the country is doing this program with this age group of kids, so it’s been really fun and it’s been a great partnership with the YMCA,” said Brainerd Lakes Area District Manager Amy Gray.
The kids at the Brainerd Lakes YMCA not only had fun, but also learned business skills that they’ll take with them for years to come.
“This is really fun and I think there is a lot of people who like doing it and getting into it and running the business,” said Sports 4 Life member Grace.
“We learned a lot of things about business and how to get it started and Josh Rardin has been a big help,” said Sports 4 Life member Lauren.
Sports 4 Life is now open and encouraging any community members to buy or donate any slightly used sporting equipment at their new YMCA location.