SAN FRANCISCO—A nonprofit organization named “Put Me In!” is launching in the San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose metropolitan areas in 2021. The nonprofit is aimed at increasing access to sports among children that are experiencing paternal incarceration.
To combat the mental health issues, PMI will be providing $1,000 financial aid grants to Children of Incarcerated Parents. PMI targets middle school aged children and will support them through out high school.
“[My team and I have] been working towards this for roughly a year and quit intensively since May/June of this year,” Matt Blodgett, PMI’s founder, told San Francisco News. “I was inspired to found [“Put Me In!”] from my own experience with parental incarceration as a child, where sports helped me overcome the mental health challenges associated with paternal incarceration.”
To bring attention to the issue, Blodgett and his team are partnering with major athletes such as Julian Edelman who is a wide receiver and punt returner for the New England Patriots. Edelman is PMI’s “Athlete Ambassador.”
“My favorite memories from childhood all revolve around sports and my teammates that I got to share them with,” said Edelman on PMI’s website. “Through those years, I had teammates who were personally impacted by parental incarceration or other unfortunate situations at home. I’ve seen first hand the positive impact that having a team around you, and a coach to rely on, had on their lives, on and off the field. That’s why I’m so excited to help “Put Me In!” increase access to sports for kids who are facing those same challenges today.”
Follow “Put Me In!” on Instagram at @put_me_in, and visit their website at https://putmein.org to learn more about PMI and the benefits of sports on mental health.