About ATL: Advance the Lives

ATL: Advance The Lives launched in 2020 with the mission to drive real and long-lasting social change in Atlanta. By engaging with Atlanta athletes, ATL: Advance The Lives will work to combat the systemic barriers that Black youth face by partnering with out of school time programs and local organizations to build long-term community engagement and create educational opportunities. Funding will be used to expand access to these programs and elevate experiences that prioritize youth educational opportunities. ATL: Advance the Lives will strive to create generational change by fighting inequality where it starts—at the youth level.


What We Believe



An Atlanta where every Black child has equal access to opportunities.

We will fight inequality where it starts by uniting the Atlanta sports and business communities in support of organizations that positively impact the lives of Black children.

Atlanta has always been at the forefront of change and can continue to be a model for Black youth investment. We want to support the organizations in the city already doing transformational work that directly supports Black youth.

We will bring together the Atlanta sports and business communities with the goal of fighting inequality impacting Black youth by supporting organizations that serve them. ATL: Advance The Lives will provide Black youth organizations in three key ways:


Directly funding community programs:

  • Reaching and serving more children at their existing sites
  • Expanding to additional sites
  • Developing additional programming and curriculum that serve Black youth


Highlighting the work of these organizations with the broader Atlanta community, including sports fans, the media and the business sector.


Working with organizations and our connections to provide life experiences that expose Black youth to the unique innerworkings of major Atlanta industries including sports, film, hospitality and technology.

In the summer of 2020, we made a public commitment to listening and learning more about the inequities in our city of Atlanta. Like so many others we were moved by everything going on in the world, to be a part of the change we felt our society needed. We created a GoFundMe campaign to not only make our own financial commitment, but to create inclusion and action across our entire community. a We were overwhelmed by the response that helped us raise over 1.3 million dollars. As a result, we felt the need to create an organization that would help make a meaningful and sustainable impact.

We started by consulting with different thought partners from the City of Atlanta and across the country, who were from all backgrounds, to help us in shaping our vision and developing action. Together, we developed our mission of “fighting inequality where it starts” where our ur efforts will be focused on supporting organizations that provide opportunity and exposure to Black children in Atlanta.

Around that same time, we felt that in order for us to do this the right way we needed someone who would be working on this full time. We feel very fortunate to have Taylor Stanley to spearhead our efforts moving forward. Her ties to the city and her previous experience working in policy and education makes her uniquely qualified to lead ATL moving forward and are truly excited about the direction and vision she has for the organization.

Sarah and I both feel a tremendous responsibility to everyone who supported the initial GoFundMe campaign and are dedicated to making your donation impactful. We have been extremely diligent over the last year and are proud of what ATL has become and look forward to seeing what we can do in the future.

-Matt and Sarah Ryan