I don't think the sport of tennis really relates to inner city or "problem youths." Tennis is seen as a preppy sport. Most of those youths would gravitate more towards sports like basketball anyways. I live in new york and I've seen this for myself. I've lived in the projects and been around. Also, with sports available to them like basketball, it doesn't really detract from negative behavior. You still see them selling drugs after they're done playing ball. And girls are still getting pregnant in their mid teens.
Also, I think it's harder to find tennis courts in those areas than it is to find a tennis racquet. How much does a racquet cost? You could probably pick one up at a garage sale for $5. How much is it to rent a court here in NYC, between $35-$65 / hr.
If you really want to see kids off the streets and being better citizens. Then you'll have to fix more things on a bigger scope than tennis.
Originally Posted by charliefedererer
Tenacity is a program in the Boston area.
"Tenacity programs meet a critical need for safe, healthy, productive after-school, in-school and summer programs for urban youth. Tennis and fitness activities are the magnets drawing interest from kids who otherwise have few athletic outlets. These athletic activities are closely integrated with literacy programs to help build academic motivation and achievement." -http://www.tenacity.org/About_Overview.php
Tenacity accepts racquets donated and uses them in their programs.
I'm not sure if there are other regional tennis programs of this type, but maybe some will see this thread and post what they know.
(Just after I posted, I realized this thread is a continuation of an old one. Well, donating unused but perfectly good tennis racquets is still a good idea.)