When Tommie Turner was a cop on Oakland’s streets he saw alot of kids go bad. It was heartbreaking to see these kids lose hope before they reached their teens. It was worse to see them die before they had a chance to find out who they were and what they wanted from life.
When Turner retired from the Police force, he felt compelled to do something about the problems he saw around him. He set up a training center for youth athletes. He runs the training center on his own property. It’s a safe place for them to work out without the hassles of street life.
Each day, he puts the kids through football drills, weight training, and wrestling. In the future there will also be a computer room so they can get their homework done too.
Turner offers it all free of charge. But, don’t underestimate him. He’s no softie! The kids can’t come and go as they please. They have to commit to the program. They have to stay in school. They must be respectful to everyone at the center. He expect them to behave because there are plenty of other kids who can take the spot.
Turner doesn’t recruit the best of the best. Some of these kids come from the worst situations. They may have gotten in trouble and they have low self esteem. Turner provides them a training center and he acts as their mentor. He provides some stability in their often turbulent lives.
In addition to running the training center, Turner is the football coach for Hayward High School.