TEAM USA Registry Supports Olympians with Innovative Funding
(3BL Media and Just Means) - Michael Phelps, Mia Hamm, Apolo Ohno: these are household, Olympic champion names. We know their names because they are incredible athletes. We also know their names because of Nike, General Mills and Got Milk? Phelps, Ham and Ohno, however, are the outliers. According to the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Foundation (USOPF), they created the common misconception that once youâre an Olympic athlete, youâre set for life financially. The reality is that most Olympic âhopefuls,â as USOPF calls aspiring Olympians, make less than $20,000 a year, far less than what they need to train and compete. Unlike many other nations, Team USA receives no government funding and depends on sponsor and donors to help them compete; it is âthe team behind the team,â as they put it.
To support the expensive training, equipment and traveling needs of Olympic-bound athletes, USOPF has established a program called TEAM USA Registry, an online take on a wedding registry, where you can select symbolic gifts representative of expenses that Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls face as they train for the game. Gifts include $15 for swimming goggles, $50 for the care of a guide dog and $250 for a basketball hoop.Â
âWhen you pick a gift to donate on the site, youâre not only donating to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Foundationâs Team USA Fund, youâre also getting a window into the life of an Olympic hopeful,â says USOPF.
TEAM USA Registry has received the support of very successful USA Olympians including Natalie Coughlin, Kerri Walsh Jennings and Missy Franklin who asked their fans to be their Secret Santa and donate. If youâve waited till the last minute to put your Santa hat on, browse through the registry and support Team USA!