In the Spotlight


Learn how "Soccer is a Unifier" at SWB Oakland, teaching language skills and contributing to the close-knit learning community at Oakland International High School

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September 21: International Day of Peace, Global

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Our Approach

Soccer Without Borders programs help young people come into a greater understanding of their bodies, minds, and voices, creating avenues toward individual growth, inclusion in new opportunities, and the achievement of personal goals. The Logic Model below is a road map of our approach to creating positive social change. It describes the outcomes participants will display through participation in SWB, the inputs SWB staff must ensure are in place and the activities offered by the program that will lead youth to outcomes. 


A Research Supported Effort:

SWB membership presents the greatest opportunity for positive youth development by providing youth with an inclusive environment that offers positive soccer and non-soccer programming, a peer-support group, and caring mentors. Our philosophy is widely supported by evidence-based research on youth development. Exemplary of these findings are the following conclusions, each finding underpins the SWB program design:

  • Engagement in team sports was associated with higher self-esteem and greater academic achievement and unrelated to antisocial behavior.  No moderation by gender, race/ethnicity, or school context was observed (Mahoney, 103).
  • Adolescents need opportunities for physical activity, development of competence and achievement, self-definition, creative expression, positive social interaction with peers and adults, a sense of structure and clear limits, and meaningful participation in authentic work (Quinn).
  • Groups of interconnected members encourage youth to take on responsibilities and master challenges.  When “healthy” opportunities to belong are not found in their environments, youth will create their own (often less healthy) alternatives (Roth, 2000; Roth & Brooks-Gunn, 2000, 70).
  • Sports and play can promote physical well-being, combat discrimination, build confidence, and a sense of security, as well as play an important role in the healing and rehabilitation process for all children affected by crisis, discrimination, and marginalization (McCarthy, 2007).