Soccer for Success is the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s innovative youth development program that uses soccer as a tool to combat childhood obesity and promote healthy lifestyles for children in under-resourced urban communities. The Foundation partners with community-based organizations across the country to operate Soccer for Success sites – providing thousands of children with free after-school programming throughout the academic year.
Physical Activity: Children participate in 90 minute sessions at least three days a week to ensure they receive the recommended 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise.
Mentorship: Each site is staffed by caring coaches who serve as mentors that are invested in the successful development of each child. Mentors stress the importance of doing well in school and avoiding negative influences such as drugs, alcohol, and violence.
Nutrition: Soccer for Success staff deliver relevant educational activities where participants are taught the basics of nutrition, the importance of making healthy lifestyle choices, and the importance of maintaining healthy eating habits.
Family Engagement: Soccer for Success strives to turn parents and family members into advocates who reinforce the program’s teachings by applying them in their homes. Family members are provided with information on nutrition, health, and public services that will aide them in their pursuit of a healthier lifestyle.
Addressing National Issues:
Childhood Obesity: Childhood obesity is one of the most pressing problems facing our children today. In the United States, nearly one in three children is overweight or obese. The problem is even more acute in underserved communities. More than 20 million children are at-risk to develop a host of obesity-related health issues.
Juvenile Delinquency:In the United States, 1.2 million juveniles are arrested each year. Every four minutes a minor is arrested for a drug offense and every seven minutes a minor is arrested for a violent crime. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the most dangerous period for juveniles to both commit and be victims of crime are the three-to-four hours immediately following the school day.The Soccer for Success program was designed to address these serious issues. The U.S. Soccer Foundation and AC PORTLAND seek to fill the void created by limited after-school programs by giving the most vulnerable children in our country an opportunity to work with mentors and develop important life skills through Soccer for Success. Together we pursue the development of places to play, places to grow and places to learn in the Portland community.
For more information visit www.ussoccerfoundation.org