Miami Dolphins linebacker Kiko Alonso is hosting a youth football camp in Puerto Rico this Saturday.
The clinic, for kids aged 8-16, is free of charge and takes place at Ciudad Deportiva Roberto Clemente, near San Juan.
Many of Alonso’s teammates have pledged to work the clinic, including: Byron Maxwell, Bobby McCain, Mike Pouncey, Xaxien Howard, Neville Hewitt, Mike Hull, Michael Thomas and Andre Branch.
Alonso’s father is Cuban but was raised in Puerto Rico. His mother is Colombian. Alonso feels connected to his Hispanic heritage and his father’s former country and hopes to encourage growth of the sport there.
“I think that although (American football) isn’t the primary sport in Latino areas, it is still played by a great number of kids,” Alonso told NBC News Latino. “I believe through spreading awareness through camps it will increase the popularity of the sport and help kids with their football careers.”
The football clinic is organized by the non-profit organization PRAFA, whose main purpose is to “promote, organize and take part in activities that develop, support and educate athletes in the sport of American Football in Puerto Rico.” Bringing local players to meet and train with elite athletes in American football is just one of many events PRAFA holds.