Youngstown Youth Flag Football celebrates 10th year with food drive

Founder Elliot Giles started the organization in 2007 with 80 kids; Now it's grown to more than 1,200 players

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – The Youngstown Youth Flag Football Association celebrated its tenth year this weekend.

Founder Elliot Giles started the organization in 2007 with 80 kids. Now it’s grown to more than 1,200 players and a league that plays twice a year.

To mark the 10th anniversary, the organization held a food drive for Second Harvest. They collected several hundred pounds of donations.

“We said, you know what, lets try to give back — and I couldn’t be more pleased with the support,” Giles said. “The community has came and given food to these kids and for these families.”

The league has teams for all kids, from ages 4-14. And coaches teach the game to all ability levels.

“It’s definitely a transition,” Giles said. “But if you start them young, that’s a good thing. You start them young and you them. I can’t give enough credit to our coaches. We do coaches clinics, we have coaches meetings. They know what to expect. Our coaches do a great job of teaching the kids the game and they come out and have a great time.”

Kids come back year after year.

“The boys love it,” parent Holli Poulakos said. “When Joshua started — he’s the littlest — he started in tiny tykes, and to be able to start at age four and be able to keep up with his older brother, it was very beneficial for him.”

The spring league is currently wrapping up. The next league starts in the fall.

For more on the YYFFA, visit its official website.