"A few months ago, I had the honor of attending a Soccer Without Borders event in Oakland, California. It was the celebration of SWB’s 10 Years of Positive Change. Soccer Without Borders is an organization that provides the opportunity for immigrant and refugee children to play soccer here in the US. Most of these children have moved away from their homes and speak English as a second language, if at all. SWB provides them a place to belong, learn, and most importantly, play.
I’ve known about SWB for several years. When I was at UCLA, my soccer team put on a free clinic to raise awareness about the program. We sold t-shirts and donated all of the profits to the organization. It was there I realized that the work SWB does has the power to influence lives in such an amazing and positive way.
A couple of years later, I helped my NWSL club team, the WNY Flash, put on another clinic in Rochester, NY.
Though I had never met anyone from the organization personally, everyone involved over the phone and through email was so thrilled and appreciative. I got such a sense of inclusivity from all of the SWB staff that I spoke with. We were able to raise more money and more awareness and most importantly, give some kids an opportunity to play soccer for free. We have structured sports in such a way that it seems kids only really play organized sports. Some kids who don't have the money or opportunity to join expensive travel or club teams might miss out on those experiences."
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