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  • Soccer Without Borders

SWB Nicaragua to host sports diplomacy exchange

Official press release:

This Friday, January 16 at 3pm in the National Stadium in Managua, the Nicaraguan Women’s National Football Team will compete against a team of American college soccer players representing Soccer Without Borders, or Fútbol Sin Fronteras (“FSF”). The game marks the 6th year that FSF and FENIFUT will come together for a friendly match to raise awareness and support for girls’ soccer in Nicaragua.

This year, the game will be held in conjunction with a U. S. Department of State sports diplomacy exchange grant. Hosted by streetfootballworld USA (sfw), a global network, the exchange brings together leaders from 5 organizations- Tiempo de Juego (Colombia), Colombianitos (Colombia), Soccer in the Streets (USA), Starfinder (USA), Street Soccer USA, and Fútbol Sin Fronteras (Nicaragua)- for a learning tour. Each participating organization will host the others in their respective city, immersing the participants in their local programs and culture. The exchange is an exciting opportunity to empower young people as leaders, and build bridges of friendship and respect among diverse communities. The group will be in attendance at the National Team Game and learn about the relationship between FSF and FENIFUT, and the incredible growth of women’s soccer in Nicaragua in recent years, including the team’s silver medal and the Central American Games of 2013.

The selected participants from Nicaragua are FSF Co-Director Veronica Balladares and Coach Fatima Lopez. Both women are former participants in the Nicaraguan Women’s Premier League, and Veronica holds a FIFA coaching certification facilitated by FENIFUT. Following the weekend’s events in Managua and Granada, the group will fly to Bogota, Colombia to visit Colombianitos and Tiempo de Juego.

In addition to the organizational leaders in attendance at Friday’s game, girls from the FSF program in Granada will be also be in attendance. Entrance to the game is free; please join us in supporting your Nicaraguan Women’s National Team and Fútbol Sin Fronteras!

For more information on the Exchange (in-country), please contact Kara McMahon at or 011-505-2552-5022

More about Soccer Without Borders:

Soccer Without Borders is a 501c3 non-profit that runs year-round youth development programs in under-served areas in the USA and abroad. Soccer Without Borders’ mission is to use soccer as a vehicle for positive change, providing under-served youth with a toolkit to overcome obstacles to growth, inclusion, and personal success. Fútbol Sin Fronteras Granada has reached more than 2,000 girls in the city of Granada during its seven years of programming, and serves 100 girls ages 7-19 six days per week, year round through soccer and educational opportunities.

More about streetfootballworld:

streetfootballworld is a worldwide network of organizations that use football (soccer) as a tool to empower disadvantaged people. By connecting with partners from sport, business, politics, and philanthropy, streetfootballworld brings global power to local initiatives. As a global network, streetfootballworld has offices in Berlin, Cape Town, Rio de Janeiro, and New York City.

More about the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ SportsUnited Division:

The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ SportsUnited Division leads the U.S. Department of State’s international exchange efforts to bring the global community together through sports. Under its SportsUnited: International Sports Programming Initiative, public and private U.S. based non-profit organizations may submit proposals to address one of three themes: Sport for Social Change, Sport and Disability, and Sport and Health. Since 2002, the division has awarded 104 grants to U.S. non-profits to conduct programs in 62 countries around the world.

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