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$2.2 Million in Olympic Funds Disbursed : Largest Share Goes to Athletic Program Aimed at 20,000 Youths

December 24, 1987|KENNETH REICH | Times Staff Writer

The board of directors of the Amateur Athletic Foundation of Los Angeles has approved about $2.2 million in 1984 Olympic surplus funds for programs and grants to Southland youth sports, officials said.

The largest project authorized involves $1.7 million for training sessions and competition in 13 sports at 50 centers scattered throughout Los Angeles County, spokesman Steve Montiel said. He said the main target group is junior high school-age boys and girls, and it is hoped that 20,000 youngsters will participate in the program starting in March.

In addition, adults desiring to learn coaching skills will be given free training by some of the coaches and foundation volunteers staffing the centers.

Each center--ranging from city and county recreation facilities to some private sports sites--will emphasize three to five of the 13 sports. The sports are archery, badminton, cycling, diving, fencing, gymnastics, rowing, soccer, swimming, synchronized swimming, team handball, wheelchair tennis and track and field.

Foundation President Anita de Frantz said announcement of specific locations and starting times will be made through the school systems. In general, the plan will offer a set schedule of basic instruction ranging from four to 12 hours a week over three to six months, as well as regular competitions.

Many of the youngsters will also have an opportunity to participate in farewell ceremonies that are planned here in August for the U.S. team departing for the Seoul Olympics, she said. They will thus see the most proficient American athletes in the sports they have been learning.

De Frantz noted that by the end of 1988 the foundation will have distributed $23 million, using interest income while conserving the original principal of about $90 million.

"I think we're making a difference for kids," she said. "That was the intention. And that means we will be making a difference for adults too and for generations of kids to come."

Grants approved by the foundation board included $110,755 to the Wilmington Boys and Girls Club, $85,000 to the Southern California Tennis Assn., $66,479 to the YWCA of Los Angeles, $50,000 for the Mount San Antonio College Relays/AAF Youth Day, $38,528 to the Minkey Field Hockey Program in Camarillo, Simi Valley and Thousand Oaks and $10,490 for the Conejo Hockey Club.

In addition, a $100,000 challenge grant was made to the East Los Angeles YMCA to help build an indoor pool at its new facility under construction. This grant is contingent on the organization raising additional money from other donors.

Receiving so-called mini-grants of $5,000 were the Montebello Youth Football Assn., the South Bay Girls Softball League, the Las Virgenes Soccer League, the Santa Ynez Valley Pony League Baseball, Encino Baseball Inc., the Shoshin-Ryu Jujitsu Club and the El Monte Pony-Colt League.

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