Detroit’s Catholic Youth Organization joins ‘Play Like A Champion Today’ initiative

Detroit — The Archdiocese of Detroit’s Catholic Youth Organization has partnered with a nationally accredited faith-based coaching educational initiative to help train local coaches and youth mentors to help see coaching “as a ministry.”

The archdiocese’s partnership with the Play Like a Champion Today Educational Series, founded in 2006 by a University of Notre Dame education and psychology professor, was announced April 3.

The program helps coaches build motivational and leadership skills and promote the spiritual development of student-athletes, said Chris Werner, director of Detroit’s CYO.

“Play Like a Champion sees coaching as a form of ministry and challenges coaches to develop the whole athlete: physically, mentally, socially and spiritually,” Werner said in a statement. “Our parishes look forward to gaining tools to enhance our total Catholic athletic experience.”

On March 24-25, Play Like a Champion director of outreach Kirstin Sheehan visited two Detroit-area parishes to meet with the first group of “local certified trainers,” who will serve as facilitators for the local “Coaching as a Ministry” program.

“We’re thrilled to partner with the Archdiocese of Detroit CYO,” Sheehan said. “We believe this is the beginning of a tremendous partnership that will be a blessing to our Play Like a Champion community and the coaches, parents and children of the Detroit area.”

Play Like a Champion Today has served more than 100,000 coaches and parents in more than 50 cities across the United States. It is the only faith-based coaching education program accredited by the National Committee for the Accreditation of Coaching Education.