Famed track and field sprinter Allyson Felix wants to empower other fellow women who face issues with childcare costs so she’s helping out athletic moms in Tokyo through a grant program.
Athleta, the sporting apparel company, the Women’s Sports Foundation (WSF), and Olympian mother Allyson Felix have teamed up to form The Power of She Fund: Child Care Grants, Good Morning America reported
Together they will support female athletes with children, who are competing in this summer’s Games in Tokyo and the Beijing Winter Olympics in 2022 by giving $10,000 to mom athletes. The women who benefit include; gold-medal-winning volleyball player, four-time Paralympian, and mom Lora Webster, hammer thrower Gwen Berry, and runner Aliphine Tuliamuk, along with six other athletes, according to the Women’s Sports Foundation.
The $200,000 grant program will cover childcare costs for mom athletes.
“When you’re restricted by your finances, you have to say, ‘These are my options.’ Having support, your options open up,” Felix says. “I think it’s going to translate to better performances. [With support] you’re a better athlete, a better person, a better mother.”
Felix is a five-time world champion and mother of 2-year-old Camryn.
“This is going to make a huge difference in their lives,” Felix told GMA. “Childcare is one of the huge barriers that we have to overcome.”
“I really do hope also that this spurs an industry-wide change, and we look to support women holistically,” she added.
The first set of mothers, six of whom are headed to the Tokyo Olympics, will receive $10,000 each.
Because families are not able to come to Tokyo due to the COVID-19 pandemic, mothers with nursing children have special needs.
The Power of She Fund: Child Care Grants was designed to accommodate any financial assistance a mom-athlete needs, GMA reported.
The upcoming games will be Felix’s first time competing as a mother and her training was a sacrifice of its own.
“I was doing a lot of my training, literally, around my house so I was running in the streets in front of my home and I was in the gym and in our garage and you know my daughter is looking down from above,” she added.
Being a mother and athlete has been part of her branding; on her Instagram page, she took a picture of her medals with her C-section scar visible and on display.
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Felix suffered from preeclampsia, high blood pressure during her pregnancy, when she delivered Camryn at 32 weeks, weighing just 3 pounds, 8 ounces, NBC News reported.