Our Story

“I Trust You With My Life” | The Martin L. Mathews Story

Based upon the life story of the  Mathews-Dickey Boys’ & Girls’ Club’s 92-year-old co-founder Martin L. Mathews,  “I Trust You With My Life” also serves as a bit of a history book. His story echoes what many may or may not know as the history of St. Louis.

A man of strong moral upbringing Mathews credits his success to his parents teaching him the importance of the Bible and the Constitution and:

“Learning what I call the three Rs: Respect, Restraint, and Responsibility. Following these principles is the best way to engender trust…

Now I am putting my trust in the hands of a writer who will tell you the tale of the Mathews-Dickey Boys’ & Girls’ Club, how it came to be, and how it has helped so many youngsters over the years. Many of those children are now adults and continue to bestow the blessings they received through our club on so many other young people. It is a virtuous cycle that makes me both humble and proud. May it continue for generations to come as a place in which parents can entrust their children.”
-Martin L. Mathews

From A Dream to A League

More than a half century ago, two men met under a shade tree at a St. Louis city park to talk about how they could help a group of school boys compete in a youth baseball league. In 1960, Martin Luther Mathews and Hubert “Dickey” Ballentine shook hands and created the Mathews-Dickey Boys’ Club. In doing so, the two former semi-pro players became much more than coaches.

More Than Coaches

They were molders of young men who would go on to become educators, social workers, public servants, doctors, lawyers, captains of industry and civic leaders. Twenty years later, the club began welcoming girls and created athletic, leadership and career programs that launched thousands of successful careers for them in sports, entertainment, fashion, science and technology.

A Legacy

In 1982 President Ronald Reagan recognized the founders and held the club up as a national model for how communities can come together to support underserved children. After “Mr. Dickey” died in 2000, Martin Mathews continued to create more programs and launch new initiatives. Now, at age 92, he shares the story of the Mathews-Dickey Boys’ & Girls’ Club and what it takes to help children realize success.

To ensure that thousands of inner-city youth continue to realize their dreams each year, the Mathews-Dickey Board of Directors commissioned Mr. Mathews’ biography. Your purchase of the book supports  the endowment that is named the Martin Luther Mathews Legacy Fund. In doing so, you are helping to secure the long-term financial stability of the club. Supporters of $30 or more to the legacy fund will receive a copy of “I Trust You With My Life.” There are also sponsorship opportunities available in which you can fund books for current members of the organization.