Encinitas

Encinitas teen starts nonprofit to donate sports equipment

When the pandemic hit a year ago and the lockdown ensued, some folks hoarded things. But Marco Alvarez, 16, was set on helping others get the very things that he valued most.

For Marco, that meant giving basketballs, volleyballs, soccer balls and footballs along with other sports equipment to kids who wouldn’t otherwise get to play sports.

Marco started the nonprofit Free Throwz last May and has given out six dozen sports balls to local groups, such as the Boys & Girls Clubs, and is getting ready to donate more equipment this month to two additional organizations.

“He has played sports his whole life and realized that some kids may not have the same opportunities that he had. So, he started Free Throwz, a nonprofit, with his own money,” said Rhonda Guaderrama, director of development at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Oceanside, which received a donation of 20 new

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