Soccer Without Borders has been named the 2018 Winner of the Robert Wood Johnson Sports Award in the category of "Influential Leader and Model for Others." The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) is the philanthropic leader in building a culture of health in America.
“Congratulations to these organizations and the passionate, dedicated people who lead them,” said Richard Besser, RWJF president and CEO. “We are inspired by their choice to use healthy play as a starting point to greater social and emotional well-being in their communities. They forge leaders, build greater understanding among strangers and endeavor to heal the personal wounds of discrimination, poverty and inequity.”
Soccer Without Borders (SWB) serves over 2,000 newcomer refugee and immigrant youth from 68 different countries of origin. Through a year-round program model and investments in breaking barriers to participation, SWB is advancing a culture of health by creating more inclusive communities were youth can reach their inherent potential.
"Soccer Without Borders is honored to be selected as a Sports Award winner, and hope that together we can advance the vision that welcoming and inclusive communities are healthier communities,” said Mary Connor, co-founder and executive director. “We believe that sport has a meaningful role to play in realizing that vision, and are grateful to all of our participants, coaches, families, staff, partners, volunteers, and supporters who enable Soccer Without Borders to work toward it every day.”