Last Thursday, October 20, 2016 we officially executed our first event to engage the refugee and mainstream youth right here in Salt Lake City! I got emotional at times (that’s how I roll) to witness simultaneously the differences and the commonalities of all the boys on that field. It was awesome!
I want to thank the boys, coaches, and parents of the Sparta Premier 06 DKJ team. I am so impressed with these young men who didn’t just show up to play a game. They showed up to start a movement to engage with these refugee young men and bring our communities together.
The match was intense at times, clearly challenging and probably a little frustrating at times but these Sparta players handled themselves with maturity, class and sportsmanship and I really appreciate that. Also, big thanks to Judge Memorial High School for use of their excellent field, and the amazing weather they provided. 😉
In order to maximize the effort of Refugee Soccer we are engaging the mainstream soccer community to formally register with us as a supporting team. Play against and engage refugee teams like the Somali Stars (more refugee teams being recruited as we speak).
I am organizing a trip for Q1 of 2017 (tried to do it sooner but sanity talked me out of it) to take a group of young soccer players and a few adult helpers to Nigeria to play soccer and deliver humanitarian aid. You can learn more here:
The Sparta players will tell you that the Somali Stars are a legit team. Part of bringing this team, and the ones that will follow, into the mainstream, where the best opportunities are, is treating them as a legitimate team. Uniforms are key part of doing that. We are raising funds to provide them with jerseys. We are about half way there and only need about $400 more to get them suited up properly. (The boys wore borrowed uniforms from a refugee adult team.)
There is an amazing young woman here in SLC who is helping these boys. She simply wants to help and stepped up big. Check out her fundraising campaign here. You can always make a tax-deductible donation to our parent company, Bridges To America here: www.paypal.me/bridgestoamerica
We are at a pivotal stage for Refugee Soccer and this match last week took us to a new level of possibilities. There is momentum building and I look forward to any and all ways you would like to be involved to keep it going. There is so much impact to make and the time is now. Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org