Every child deserves a chance.

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  • underprivileged children in at-risk neighborhoods Los Angeles
  • We use athletics as a vehicle to give young people a stronger sense of self-esteem
  • Coach Derek teaches sports fundamentals to disadvantaged children of poverty
  • Lets Give Them A Shot is a non-profit 501(C-3) organization
  • Our Mission

    To coach, mentor and empower at risk youth in Los Angeles to lead healthy and positive lives through sports instruction, employment and college preparation.

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  • Volunteer

    Together we can positively
    influence young lives

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  • Donate

    Why would you give money to help
    Kids you do not even know?

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Coach Derek Class Schedules

Coach Derek's Youth Sports Program for Boys & Girls Ages 2-12

Coach Derek's Youth Sports Instruction enriches children at all levels and skills. Your child will have fun while developing sports skills, overall strength and coordination – plus life lessons like teamwork and self-respect in a positive environment!

NEW! Any class, any time we want for $80.00 per month!
All The Info Here!

Coach Derek Class Schedules

LGTS 1st Annual Capital Campaign!

KABC News: Nonprofit Starts Watts Kids on Road to College

By Lori Corbin, KABC News | Read it on KABC NEWS Monday, July 24, 2017

In order for children to be good in sports and make a team, they have to be good in education. Coach Derek says all it takes is for parents to read to their kids about 21 minutes a night. (KABC) Watch The Video Here

Even though it's a hot and sticky day in Watts, Coach Derek Locklear and his team are giving kids a little extra time with sport skills and studies.

"So we work with the teachers to help those children who really, really need extra special help," said Locklear.

Locklear's "Coach Derek" program is successful, but it's his "Let's Give Them a Shot" program that he is most passionate about.

It's a non-profit that gives second graders and older kids help in the classroom as well as on the field.

Jerson Ramirez, who went through Locklear's coaching program, grew up in South Los Angeles, so he understands the challenges of growing up in the area.

"I don't want to blame the teachers, but sometimes they don't hire people who have the experience, the time," said Ramirez, who enjoys teaching.

"We're meeting children in the second, third and fourth grade that just don't know their letters. If you don't know your letters, then how are you going to read?" asked Locklear.

In order for children to be good in sports and make a team, they have to be good in education. Coach Derek says all it takes is for parents to read to their kids about 21 minutes a night.

(Article continued here)

From a Dream

Underprivileged Children

Derek Locklear, owner of Coach Derek Inc., founded Let’s Give Them a Shot with the vision of creating a program that would serve underprivileged children in at-risk neighborhoods in the Los Angeles area.

At-Risk Community

Due to low resources and limited funds, this at-risk population is missing what every child deserves; the opportunity to learn and play with quality instruction and equipment.

A study reported in the Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport finds that disadvantaged children may fall short in basic motor skills: "The vast majority of underprivileged preschoolers who were tested scored below the 30th percentile of children across the U.S... That ranking is considered developmentally disabled."

Being the Best They Can Be

Throughout the Let’s Give Them A Shot program, children learn sports skills, game rules, and life lessons such as teamwork, sportsmanship and leadership, as well as being the best they can be individually and collectively.

Our Mission

Young people who succumb to risk factors are often unable to find a helping hand; are without a caring adult who can offer a positive alternative. Let’s Give Them A Shot offers positive, non-competitive sports instruction within the at-risk community.

Our mission
Let's Give Them a Shot

Let's Give Them a Shot is a non-profit organization that helps kids get the sports instruction they need regardless of whether or not they can afford it. Derek Locklear's goal is to teach and reach as many children as he can through sports programs that build a healthy spirit, mind and body.

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Radio Interview

Coach Derek: Interview on Sheldon Eskin Show

Sheldon Eskin interviews Coach Derek Locklear, founder of Coach Derek Inc. along with Let's Give Them A Shot!. Coach Derek's goal is to teach and reach as many children as he can through sports. He subscribes to the belief that teaching the fundamentals of sports enriches children at all levels, ages and skills. These are things that last beyond the end of the game.

Listen to the Interview Now

Hermosa Beach Reporter

Want to play sports? Spend some time with a book first

By Daniella Segura, The Beach Reporter | Read it on Hermosa Beach Reporter
Tuesday, August 3, 2017

When Derek Locklear started the nonprofit, Let's Give Them a Shot, 13 years ago, he thought he would simply be bringing sports instruction to kids in at-risk areas in Los Angeles who couldn't afford it.

After a few years, Locklear, better known as Coach Derek in the South Bay, noticed a problem he couldn’t ignore: Many of his athletes were struggling in school because they had trouble reading.

Now, in a new after school program in Watts, students learn different sports, like baseball, soccer, basketball and football. However, the program is focused first and foremost on literacy.


Before being released to the field or court, children must read for 21 minutes with a volunteer or coach.

"Our job at Let's Give Them a Shot is to pick up the children that have been left behind," Locklear said. "The solution was reading and I couldn't ignore that."

So, Locklear created a branch of Let's Give Them a Shot called the Alpha Leadership Academy at 112th Elementary in Watts. The program takes the bottom 20 percent of second graders and puts them into an after school program.

"We can teach them how to play sports all day long, and they may be really good at soccer, basketball or baseball, but if they can't read, it's all going to be for naught, because they're not going to be in school anyway," Locklear said...
(Article continued here)

LGTS Afterschool Program

Afterschool Programming for At Risk Elementary Schools

  • The LGTS Afterschool Program tests Reading and Math skills early and often, instilling a program that keeps our kids on track.
  • Improving the Parent-Child Relationship
  • The LGTS Afterschool Program uses uplifting, positive talk with students in our program.
  • Engaging whole families encourages positive behavior both in and out of school settings.

Read More: LGTS Afterschool Program

LGTS Video

This Is Let's Give Them A Shot

When Derek Locklear lost his dream of being a pro athlete, he gained a new opportunity. His nonprofit now brings free sports to underprivileged children.
Watch the Video Here

LGTS New Sponsor

Wells Fargo

We are proud to announce Wells Fargo as a sponsor to and
for Lets Give Them A Shot!

LGTS at the

Rod Dedeaux Foundation Ceremony

(Left to Right) LGTS Assistant Program Director Patrick Fusaro, Founder Coach Derek, Chairman of the Board Bill Bergstrom

Donate To Let's Give Them a Shot Now On

Amazon Smile

What is AmazonSmile?
AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose Let's Give Them a Shot!
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Help underprivileged children in at-risk neighborhoods of Los Angeles

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Learn more about us...

How We Help...

We bring fundamental sports instruction in Basketball, Soccer and Baseball to children age 5-12 in areas where children would otherwise not have the means to participate.

We use athletics as a vehicle to give young people a stronger sense of self-esteem and provide lessons about sportsmanship and interacting with others that last far beyond their time on the field or court.


We currently offer two different ways to donate to Let’s Give Them A Shot.


Find out what some of the key people involved in Let’s Give Them a Shot have to say about the LGTS program.


Our Annual Poker Tournament & Silent Auction Fundraiser was a huge success for underprivileged kids served by Let’s Give Them a Shot. LGTS Fundraisers

Schools and Organizations LGTS has served from 2005 till Present

LTGS Programming serves almost 3,000 children a year in the following school communities:

PE Programs
  • Manhattan Place Elementary 500
  • 186th Elementary 500
  • Thomas Jefferson High School = employment = College Prep
  • Compton Ave Elementary 459
  • Playa Vista Elementary School 500
  • Total estimated children served 2,414
After School Child Care Programs
  • Goethe Charter Elementary School 200
  • Total estimated children served 350
Organizations Served
  • Girls Club of LA 150
  • A Place Called Home 75
  • Total estimated children served 225

LGTS Programs

Current Programs
Let's Give Them a Shot is currently active in two at-risk organizations in the Los Angeles area.
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Sports League
Let's Give Them a Shot will utilize Professional Coaches to motivate, instruct and inspire elementary age boys and girls in Flag Football, Basketball, Baseball and Soccer.
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Children with Neurodiversity
Coach Derek volunteers his time with Children with Special Needs at The Friendship Circle of the South Bay.
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all programs

Ways We Help

The Hope: How Donations Flow to At-Risk Children
Let's Give Them a Shot is expanding the program to go into even more schools and recreation centers. We need funding to provide coaches and equipment to these groups.
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Childhood Obesity
Let's Give Them a Shot also gives kids who may not be as physically active a chance to get in the habit of playing sports and exercising, which can benefit their emotional and physical well-being lifelong. Read More

Equipment Drive
Due to low resources and limited funds this at-risk population is missing what every child deserves; to have which is an opportunity to learn and play with quality instruction and equipment. Read More


Let’s Give Them A Shot is a non-profit 501(C-3) organization.

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Every child deserves a chance.

Aware of the overwhelming negative influences facing underprivileged children in Los Angeles, Derek Locklear decided he must provide at-risk youth with alternatives to unhealthy behaviors; offering hope and a positive alternative to alienation, depression, gangs & crime.
Through this coaching and exposure to the “Coach Derek way” he was confident he could be a positive influence in these children’s lives.

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