Gym class is great way for students to garner much needed physical activity while promoting their overall well-being and teamwork skills. Outside of fitness and social interaction, it is a great way to introduce students to new exercises, games, and all-in-all fun activities!

Ramon Martinez, educator at CAST Tech High School, wanted to provide gym equipment for the students who loved to play traditional sports, but also for those who were fond of games that are often overlooked – like badminton and pickleball. Thanks to Power of the Dollar® members, he was awarded a $1,000 grant in December 2022 for new physical education equipment, and he went on to purchase badminton nets, floor hockey sticks, and much more!

Ramon Martinez with Check

Ramon Martinez Celebrates Grant Win

“I just looked around to see if there were any sort of grants, or any sort of wish lists, and I came across the Firstmark grant,” said Martinez. “When I applied and was accepted, I was shocked! The motivation behind it was just to get enough equipment, learning about different games, and stuff like that!”

Stockpiling the sports equipment at CAST Tech High School has given students a passion for different activities and games to participate in. By providing a wide range of exercise options, the gym equipment is enhancing their fitness levels and encouraging them to explore different ways to stay active. The equipment has aligned with their personal preferences when it comes to embracing an active lifestyle, but above all, has given them so much joy to look forward to!

 “You don’t walk into a traditional high school and see someone playing disc golf, or someone throwing a frisbee,” he said. “I kind of wanted that feel, so when people do come in here, they can see these kids are having fun. I don’t have to walk in and tell the kids: ‘I need you to do this. I need you to do that.’ The kids know the expectations, they know the routines, and they just get up, get it done, and we just have fun in here!”

Looking to help local schools, invest in your community, and support educators like Ramon Martinez? Make a tangible, positive impact by joining the collective giving of our Power of the Dollar® membership. Learn more at, and together, we can create pathways that lead to better lives and stronger communities.