There are too many men, women and children in our world today that believe they have no value and no worth. It is our desire to change their belief by sharing the truth that EVERY life is special and significant. At the end of the day, our hope is to witness a movement of empowered, transformed and inspired individuals making a difference in the world they live in and the communities they serve.
We have been servicing various communities since November 2008 and became an official Illinois non-profit organization in June 2012. Our organization has a triad focus on CAMPS, COACHING and COMMUNITY. Through these areas, we are excited to use our talents and resources to positively affect communities worldwide.
Our football camps are provided by The Ray McElroy Pro Football Youth Camps. Our FREE youth football camps were developed to serve marginalized youth with an up close opportunity to see men of character serve as coaches, husbands, fathers and mentors. We integrate expert football field training by former NFL and top collegiate players with off-the-field life skills through partnerships with local business professionals. Our goal is to develop a well-rounded student-athlete.
Our coaching consists of various efforts to make a difference through media, meetings and mentoring. We have a weekly radio segment, where we teach applicable life principles for any individual wanting to grow beyond their career status. We also partner with NFL clergy, schools, universities, churches and business organizations, where we lead chapel services. Lastly, we created a life-plan coaching program called “Life Beyond the Game” to tackle the staggering statistics surrounding professional athletes within two or more years of retirement.
Our community needs are ever changing. In effort to meet the current needs of the community, we have maintained the flexibility necessary to provide life transforming assistance. Our annual school tour is an opportunity to use the platform of football as a tool to positively impact youth regarding their thinking of self, others and their community.
The “Matthew 25 Movement” is our attempt to eradicate the homeless population by feeding the whole person. Along with key partnerships, we serve Chicagoland homeless shelters by feeding them a top quality meal from local chefs, lead by MK Restaurant executive chef Erick Williams; conduct on-site interviews for employment; and share an inspirational and empowering message of encouragement.
Ray McElroy is a native of Chicago, Proviso West alum and graduate from Eastern Illinois University. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics and he is a licensed minister. He spent six seasons in the NFL playing for the Indianapolis Colts, Detroit Lions, and the Chicago Bears. After retirement, he served as the Bears’ team chaplain for 5 years. McElroy is devoting his post football career to encouraging youth, young adults and families through A Ray of Hope on Earth. McElroy is a full-time professional, motivational speaker who for the past 13 years has been bringing the life changing message of Jesus Christ to the masses. With the winning combination of his high-energy and athleticism along with the powerful message of truth, McElroy has successfully captured the minds, thoughts and actions of thousands of youth across America. Students and principals alike have confirmed McElroy’s message is hard-hitting, clear-cut and decisive as well as enlightening, empowering and equipping everyone with valuable skills to take their life to a higher level. Visit our comments page for more feedback.
At Proviso West High School, McElroy was a track & field and football athlete. He still holds the record there in the 110 high hurdles, 4×1 relay and 300 intermediate hurdles events. Annually McElroy returns to his roots in the summer to host the Ray McElroy Pro Football Youth Camp. There he gathers his current and former professional football friends to assist him in teaching professional level football skills on the field while incorporating evocative mentoring segments teaching the importance of upstanding off the field behavior.
While at EIU, McElroy was a four-year starter at cornerback for the Panthers, McElroy was also a 3-time first team All Gateway Conference player (1992-1994), an Associated Press Third Team All-American (1994) and selected for The Kelly Tires Blue Gray All-Star Classic. In 1995, the Safety/Cornerback was selected as the fourth round draft pick by the Indianapolis Colts where he played for four years. He then went on to play for the Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions.
As McElroy was capturing the attention of the NFL, he also caught the eye of his college sweetheart, Michelle. They have four beautiful children. They have also journeyed the road of ministry together. They both hold a bachelor degree in theology and are ordained ministers. They also are certified FLOW consultants and life coaches from the Center for Advanced Coaching.