Sanya Richards Fast Track Program
The Sanya Richards Fast Track Program is the brainchild of Sanya Richards Ross and Andrew Post of the Fun 4 Kidz Foundation. Since its inception in 2007, the program seeks to combine sports with literacy and numeracy in a dynamic and outstanding initiative enjoyed by youth in Richards Ross’ native island home of Jamaica. The primary focus of the program is to enhance literacy and numeracy; develop students’ readiness for standardized tests; promote an active and healthy lifestyle through sports; and enhance social skills with regards to professionalism and employability.
In 2009 three hundred and seventy five (375) children from the Kingston area were facilitated by the Sanya Richards Fast Track Program at a total of six different schools. Penwood, Bridgeport, Tarrant, Donald Quarrie and Tivoli joined Kingston High as beneficiaries of the Fun 4 Kidz – Sanya Richards Fast Track Program. The program meets for 20 weeks, twice a week for two hours per session. The Sanya Richards Fast Track Program provides the necessary infrastructure and materials for this program as well as for future school usage. These materials include sports equipment such as track and field starting blocks, batons, soccer goals, basketball hoops, reading and learning materials (including over 8,500 books), and work-related supplies.
The Education Ministry in Jamaica is partner to the Sanya Richards Fast Track Program, which has reported improvement of one grade level or more for at least 55 percent of participants. Students previously unable to compete in Jamaica’s National Boys’ and Girls’ Track and Field Championships due to poor academic records, were able to enter events after completing just six months in the program. The program continues to expand, reaching and helping more children, since partnering with USAID, who donated more than $100,000 to the cause.
Win With Integrity
Sanya was one of the first athletes to participate in the USA Track and Field Win With Integrity Program in which she travels to schools and speaks with children about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, drug-free living, and hard work. She recently joined Lance Armstrong in the fight against Cancer on the Livestrong campaign, and was chosen to don a custom made Livestrong uniform and golden spikes in competition.
She has also participated in initiatives with Feeding America, in an effort to end the hunger epidemic in the United States. As a member of the American Bechet’s Disease Association, Sanya works to help bring awareness to Bechet’s disease, an autoimmune disease that results from damage to the blood vessels throughout the body, particularly the veins.
SRR Scholarship Recipient: Shannon Ray
Together, we can make a difference, one life at a time…
School: Xavier University College Preparatory
Favorite Subjects: Math and English
Future Goals: To be an English Teacher or practice Sports Medicine
Track and Field: Ranked # 2 in the 300m Hurdles, Louisiana 3A