MATS (Martial Arts Training And Scholarships) was founded in 2013 by a group of lifelong, committed martial artists from the East Bay.
Our volunteers and coaches include former police officers, teachers, competitive athletes and people from all walks of life. We teach kids practical skills not just for martial arts but for life outside of the gym, like hard work, respect, and dedication.
HOW DOES MATS WORK?
MATS is a partnership of martial arts schools and gyms working together to reach into their communities to support young adults. MATS provides martial arts scholarships to underserved youth - both summer camps and extended programs - to help foster personal growth. We also offer academic support and job preparation.
Scholarships allow youth to train at local gyms and work with mentors and trainers. We expect our members to maintain good grades, participate in regular training and hone their life skills. If students wish to train more, they must show a commitment to academics and other responsibilities.
MATS partners include social services like the Alameda Foster Youth agency; Safe Passages, an Oakland-based community organization that works to support families and children and disrupt the cycle of poverty, and local middle and high schools. We collaborate to form an inclusive environment where young adults are backed in their academics and physical training and are prepared to join the workforce and become a productive member of the community.