The Thumb Area Football League (TAFL) is a non-profit full pad tackle football and cheerleading league open to kids ages 7-13, and a proud member of The USA Football and the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU). The League was established in 2003 by Tom Abel, and originally included 125 players, eight teams, and parents who officiated.
Blue Water Healthy Living spoke with Jason O’Hare of O’Hare Insurance Agency and Ron Roe of Keller Williams Realty who have been with the Thumb Area Football League since 2005. Prior to this, the two did not know one another, but in coming together are now an integral part of a program which has grown to include over 1,000 participants, including players and cheerleaders. Mr. Roe is the acting Vice President of The Thumb Area Football League and Mr. O’Hare is the Community Director for Thumb Area Football in Port Huron. Mr. O’Hare has worked in the Insurance business for 20 years and noted the importance of giving back to the youth in the Blue Water Area, where he has was also born and raised.
“Football,” says O’Hare, “…more than any other sport, teaches teamwork, discipline, leadership, and sportsmanship.”
The aim of thumb Area Football is to compliment the football programs of neighboring communities to ensure positive development of children throughout the area. Along with Port Huron, Algonac, Anchor Bay, Croswell, Richmond, Memphis, and Yale all have participants to TAFL. According to a University of Michigan Study by Philip Veliz, a postdoctoral fellow at the U-M Substance Abuse Research Center, “If a high school’s sport participation rates increased by 10 percent, serious crime incidence rates would drop by .05 percent and suspension rates dipped by 0.1 percent.” In a day and age when more and more youth in our community are unfortunately drawn to crime and drugs, as exemplified by the area’s heroin and opioid epidemic, Mr. O’Hare and Mr. Roe are committed to giving local youth a place to belong; to be a part of something bigger with the true spirit, heart, and strength of the Blue Water Area.
To learn more about Thumb Area Football, O’Hare Insurance Agency, and how participation in sports helps to combat crime, please visit the helpful links below:
If you enjoy reading Blue Water Healthy Living? Don’t forget to “Like” us on Facebook!