Scott Ferguson says his 16-year-old son with down syndrome is what prompted him to start A.S.K., or Adaptive Sports for Kids. He's been coaching baseball for children and young adults with disabilities for 11 years, but last year he decided to expand to give every child the ability to feel the triumph you only get from playing on the sporting field.
Up until recently it's been very difficult for children with special needs or disabilities to Break their way into athletics.
Scott Ferguson says, "So we decided to form A.S.K."
It's a non-profit aimed at giving all children a chance to play sports. Last year A.S.K offered four sports. This year they've expanded to offer six.
Ferguson says, "Because every one of these kids are athletes. They just got to find it and they've never had an opportunity to participate in sports so but now they can participate in tae kwon do, cheer, baseball, soccer, flag football and basketball."
That participation leads to numerous benefits like gaining focus and coordination.
Ferguson says, "So it teaches them balance. So they're getting their physical therapy and their occupational that they would normally get in school, but they get to do it out on a baseball field or a flag football."
Keaton Daws plays baseball and is learning tae kwon do. His stepfather, Cain Afinowicz, says A.S.K. has brought Keaton out of his shell.
He says, "He wants to go and to be with people. He wants to be the lime light."
Keaton says his favorite part is, "to hit the boards."
With more than 400 children taking advantage of six different sports, there is something for everyone to like and be proud of.
"It gives him a chance to be normal." Afinowicz says.
Ferguson tells 12News, "When you see these kids being athletes on these fields they walk out and that baseball might only go three feet but they've hit a home run and at the closing ceremonies they won the World Series."
Adaptive sports for kids has 110 kids signed up for baseball who are divided into 6 teams. Opening ceremonies are this Saturday at Doornbos Park in Nederland at 1:30 p.m. Everyone is invited to come.
Adaptive sports for kids is completely free for parents. Everything is paid for through donations and fundraisers like the one we told you about last week that nine-year-old Cooper Slott through his state basketball competition. Cooper placed 4th in that competition and raised more than $2000 for A.S.K.