USTA Foundation, the national charitable organization of the United States Tennis Association (USTA), today announced it has awarded ACEing Autism in West Hollywood, Calif., a $10,000 program grant. The foundation concluded its 2014 grant funding cycle by awarding $741,500 in grants to 44 organizations that provide tennis and education to under-resourced youth and people with disabilities, as well those organizations with a need for program infrastructure support.

ACEing Autism was founded in 2008 by tennis teaching professional Richard Spurling and his wife Shafali Jeste, a pediatric neurologist at UCLA Medical Center. Currently, there are 30 ACEing Autism programs in 15 states nationwide, including 11 in Southern California. The hope is to add 15 new locations in 2015. At each location, the goal is to offer a weekly tennis program for children between the ages of 4 to 18. The grant funds will cover the costs of equipment for the new sites, court time for the first year and travel costs for the training team to each of the new sites.

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The USTA Foundation program grant is a biannual national initiative that was established to award organizations that successfully combine tennis and education to give under-resourced youth and individuals with disabilities the opportunity to play tennis and improve their academic skills in a structured setting. These programs also strive to help combat childhood obesity by promoting healthy lifestyles.

“The USTA Foundation is honored to recognize such outstanding organizations around this country, which greatly impact so many deserving students, children in need and the communities in which they live,” said Dan Faber, Executive Director, USTA Foundation. “Their amazing work makes a difference in thousands of lives across the country and truly inspires us all.”

To date, USTA Foundation has awarded more than $19 million in grants and scholarships to hundreds of programs benefitting thousands of children and adults through tennis, education and health programming, primarily through the NJTL network and also through efforts to assist Military Personnel, Veterans, and individuals with disabilities.

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