Hamilton Park Bobcats

Hamilton Park Bobcats

The Advocate has written much about Hamilton Park, the historic Lake Highlands-area neighborhood that has fallen on some tough experiences over the past few years.

There’s at least one thing you can count on to bring the Hamilton Park neighborhood together — youth football. After one coach was killed in an act of violence a couple years ago, we took a look at what football actually means to this neighborhood, and we learned that it runs deep. For the boys, it means an education in self-discipline, teamwork and healthy physical activity. For neighborhood adults, it offers an opportunity to give back and mentor youngsters. For the many single mothers, one coach notes, it means assistance from a positive male role model.

Coach Tevar Watson, who leads the Hamilton Park Bobcats, one of two Hamilton Park football programs, just launched a seasonal fundraising campaign. Neighbors can learn more about the program and donate here, if they feel so inclined.

The Bobcats are an organized non-profit which has allowed boys from low-income families to play football in leagues citywide, Watson notes. And the Bobcats are good. “The flag and 4th-grade teams went undefeated during the 2015 season and won the Superbowl Championship game for the third year in a row,” he says.

The team in the 2016 season will move up to Texas Youth Football Association, the largest youth football league in Texas. In order to compete safely the team members will need equipment that is often cost prohibitive for neighborhood families.

“Most of our parents are single mothers who can’t afford the fees to play nor pay for the necessary equipment,” Watson notes. “We do not want to turn away any children due to lack of money to participate.”

Funds raised beyond the cost of equipment will be used to host a end of year banquet, Watson says.

“We are looking for companies or individuals who are willing to either give a monetary donation or who will sponsor our organization to help us re-invigorate our once, thriving neighborhood,” he adds.

Contributors will be in the company of NFL stars Aqib Talib and Wade Smith.

Read our feature story here.