NEW D.C. AREA MINI-PITCH UNVEILED TO SUPPORT INCREASED ACCESS TO YOUTH SOCCER PROGRAMMING
August 6, 2018
U.S. Soccer Foundation
WASHINGTON, D.C.–Youth soccer players from throughout Washington D.C. were on hand today for the unveiling of a new mini-pitch at Petworth Recreation Center, as part of a national effort to positively impact the lives of young people through participation in the sport.
The event was attended by youth soccer players who are members of DC SCORES, a local philanthropic group that organizes neighborhood teams and runs Soccer for Success, the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s after-school soccer program. Also in attendance were members of Major League Soccer’s (MLS) D.C. United, the District of Columbia Department of Parks and Recreation, as well as representatives from the U.S. Soccer Foundation and Musco Lighting.
“We are proud to unveil a new safe place to play in our backyard here in Washington, D.C.,” said Ed Foster-Simeon, president & CEO of the U.S. Soccer Foundation. “This new pitch will ensure that local D.C. youth will have a safe place to play the beautiful game and cultivate critical life skills like teamwork and confidence that will help them succeed on and off the pitch. Better still, thanks to Musco’s generous support, many youth and adults can play for longer hours with the inclusion of new lights as part of the space.”
“Soccer is family and at D.C. United we are a family. That’s why it gives me so much pleasure and pride that D.C. United, Musco Lighting, the DC Department of Parks and Recreation and the U.S. Soccer Foundation have created this beautiful mini-pitch that is being donated to the Petworth Recreation Center,” Jason Levien, United Managing General Partner and CEO, said. “This type of collaboration gives us the opportunity to highlight D.C. United’s commitment to increasing the accessibility of soccer and supporting local youth programs. Together with our charitable partner, DC SCORES, we look forward to providing endless hours of free youth soccer programming in this community.”
The new mini-pitch supports the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s national movement, It’s Everyone’s Game, which was launched in 2017 with the goal of building 1,000 mini-pitches nationwide by 2026 and engaging one million children in the Foundation’s Soccer for Success program annually. The mini-pitches, like the one unveiled at Petworth Recreation Center, help ensure children living in underserved communities, where there is not always affordable and easy access to soccer programs and play spaces, can benefit from all that the game of soccer has to offer.
“Musco has been a partner with the U.S. Soccer Foundation for roughly two decades,” said Jeff Rogers, Vice President of Musco. “This is a great program to benefit thousands of young people who need and deserve an opportunity, and we’re proud to support the Foundation in making this happen.”
In addition to Musco—which has pledged funding and is donating field lighting for the mini-pitches—the U.S. Soccer Foundation has received the support of MLS, adidas, and Target as national partners of the initiative, as well as participating communities and municipalities across the country.
Research indicates that participation in after-school soccer programs can have a significant impact on the development of teamwork skills, can motivate kids to try harder in school, and can help them avoid anti-social behavior. The newly-built mini-pitch at Petworth Recreation Center will serve as a positive outlet for local youth to not just play soccer, but also develop critical life skills, boost confidence, and aid in their personal growth both on and off the pitch.
“At DC SCORES we consistently see that opportunity is crucial to youth development. We support every opportunity that gives kids a chance to play, and applaud the U.S. Soccer Foundation, D.C. United, and its partners for creating another,” says DC SCORES Executive Director Bethany Henderson.
About U.S. Soccer Foundation
The U.S. Soccer Foundation’s programs are the national model for sports-based youth development in underserved communities. Since its founding in 1994, the Foundation has established programs proven to help children embrace an active and healthy lifestyle while nurturing their personal growth beyond sports. Its cost-effective, high-impact initiatives offer safe environments where kids and communities thrive. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the U.S. Soccer Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) organization.
About Musco Lighting
Since 1976, Musco has specialized in the design and manufacture of sports and large-area lighting with innovations in light quality, glare reduction, and light control responsible to the needs of facility owners, users, neighbors, and the night sky. Musco’s Total Light Control – TLC for LED® system technology delivers a level of light control and uniformity that can’t be matched, and is the solution of choice for neighborhood fields, collegiate and professional stadiums and arenas, international speedways, and global events such as the Olympic Games. Musco backs its LED solutions with a long-term warranty covering parts and labor, eliminating maintenance concerns and costs for its customers.
About D.C. United
One of the founding clubs of Major League Soccer in 1996, D.C. United are the most decorated team in the United States with 13 domestic and international trophies, and the most championed professional team in the District of Columbia. The Black-and-Red have won the MLS Cup four times (1996, 1997, 1999 and 2004), the Supporters’ Shield four times (1997, 1999, 2006 and 2007) and the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup three times (1996, 2008 and 2013). United have called the District home for the past 22 years and will continue that tradition as they move into Audi Field in Southwest D.C. on July 14, 2018. The state-of-the-art urban facility has a capacity of 20,000 fans and will feature 31 luxury suites, a bike valet, and 500,000 total square feet of mixed-use retail and residential space on site, making it a 365-day destination for fans and D.C. residents alike.
adidas, the Foundation's Safe Places to Play - Mini-Pitch Partner, supports providing children in underserved communities with safe play spaces nationwide. adidas strives to be the globally leading and most popular sporting goods brand. Dedicated to innovation, adidas embraces creativity and seeks to be socially responsible in all facets of its brand. For more information, please visit adidas.com.
APT (Advanced Polymer Technology), the Foundation’s Partner for Acrylic Coating Products, is a global leader in high performance sports surfaces. APT provides people around the world with safe, reliable, performance enhancing surfaces. APT’s Laykold Masters acrylic surfacing system will be the official surface of an estimated 500 mini-pitches. For more information on APT, please visit www.sportsbyapt.com.
For athletes and soccer enthusiasts, AstroTurf® is redefining how synthetic soccer fields are built and perform. The brand offers advanced, state-of-the-art synthetic turf systems with proprietary engineered technologies. A growing number of clubs, high schools, colleges, professional sports teams and municipalities continue to select AstroTurf’s LigaTurf-branded products for their premium quality, technical superiority, and safety. To learn more, visit the company’s recently redesigned website, www.astroturf.com/soccer. - See more at: https://ussoccerfoundation.org/article/astroturf-partners-with-the-u.s.-soccer-foundation-as-a-national-partner-for-field-building-program#sthash.FL8E8bAM.dpuf
CHA Sports, the Foundation's Supplier for Soccer Facility Design and Planning Services, provides community partners with expertise in soccer facility design. CHA Sport's full service approach allows the company to build world-class projects without breaking budgets. For more information, please visit chacompanies.com.
The DICK'S Sporting Goods Foundation
DICK’S Sporting Goods and The DICK’S Sporting Goods Foundation believe that participation in sports makes people better. Since 2014, DICK’S and The DICK’S Foundation have pledged more than 0 million to support youth sports teams and leagues in need. Through our Sports Matter initiative we strive to increase awareness for underfunded youth athletics nationwide and provide much-needed support through equipment, uniform and monetary donations. For more information on Sports Matter, visit SportsMatter.org.
Hunter Industries, the Foundation's National Partner for Irrigation Equipment, is one of the world's leading manufacturers of irrigation equipment for turf, landscape and soccer fields. Hunter Industries' focus is on landscape irrigation with a significant part of its business centering on the proper care and maintenance of sports turf. For more information, please visit hunterindustries.com. Please contact Lynda Wightman, 406-273-3073, firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions regarding the U.S. Soccer Foundation's grants program.
Johnson & Johnson
Johnson & Johnson, the Foundation’s grant partner, is dedicated to supporting the next generation of female leaders by providing greater access to girls’ youth soccer programming in underserved communities nationwide. As the world’s largest and most broadly based healthcare company, Johnson & Johnson strives to create healthier communities, and put a healthy mind, body and environment within reach of everyone, everywhere. For more information, please visit www.jnj.com.
Kwik Goal, the Foundation’s Official Supplier for goals, seating, boundary equipment, training equipment and coaching accessories, will be supporting a variety of Foundation programs and initiatives including: Soccer for Success, National Training and the Safe Places to Play program. Over thirty years ago, Kwik Goal was founded on the revolutionary concept of providing transportable goals for coaches at all age levels. Since that time, Kwik Goal has continued to focus on helping coaches and soccer programs create safe and dynamic learning environments by supplying high quality, safety tested soccer goals, field equipment and training equipment to the domestic and international market. For more information, please visit Kwikgoal.com.
MLS WORKS, Major League Soccer's community outreach initiative, is dedicated to addressing important social issues and serves as a platform for both League and club philanthropic programs. MLS WORKS seeks to establish Major League Soccer as a leader for improving the lives of people through sport. MLS WORKS is committed to improving the communities where we live and play our games by executing national programs and legacy projects, charitable giving campaigns, and undertaking various initiatives in underserved communities.
As a proud corporate partner of the U.S. Soccer Foundation, Musco is dedicated to helping the major charitable arm of American soccer create new opportunities through high-quality sports lighting. Their Total Light Control—TLC for LED™ technology is engineered as a system with lighting, structural, and electrical components designed to work together for streamlined installation and long-term reliability. TLC for LED delivers superior field lighting while eliminating glare and spill from impacting surrounding neighborhoods. And Musco’s long-term warranty covering parts and labor means U.S. Soccer Foundation partners don’t have to handle any maintenance on their system, or pay for it, for 25 years. Visit https://ussoccerfoundation.org/grants/ to learn more about the grant program and application process.
SCORE Sports, the preferred provider of shin guards to the Foundation’s Soccer for Success program, is a family-owned and operated business specializing in sports equipment, uniforms and apparel. SCORE is an industry leader and has been involved in the sports community for over 40 years. SCORE outfits athletes with high-quality uniforms that SCORE develops, designs and manufactures in the U.S. SCORE takes pride in working with various non-profit groups and causes to give back to athletes who may need some extra support to play the game they love. SCORE is environmentally cautious with the materials it uses for its products and does its part in minimizing our environmental footprint. SCORE proudly offers a wide variety of products to provide customers with a one-stop shop for all your soccer needs. For more information, please visit scoresports.com.
Soccer.com, the Foundation's National Partner for Soccer Equipment and Uniforms, was founded in 1984 to provide high quality soccer gear at reasonable prices through its nationally circulated catalog. Soccer.com embodies a passion for the game that extends to the people who play, coach and support soccer. For more information, please visit soccer.com.
Target announced a national partnership with Safe Spaces to Play in 2017, along with a million commitment to build 100 new soccer play spaces with the U.S. Soccer Foundation by 2020. This is the latest initiative in the Minneapolis-based retailer’s multi-dimensional approach to the sport of soccer, bringing the game to more kids and families across the country, and unlocking access and increasing involvement at all levels.
TGI Worldwide, the Foundation’s National Partner for Visual Branding (Signage, Event Décor, Pageantry, Sponsorship Activation), Perimeter Field Board Systems, Creative Services and Event Operations is proud to support a variety of initiatives and programs throughout the United States. Headquartered in the U.S., TGI is an internationally recognized sports marketing company delivering high profile Visual Branding, Live Event Management, LED, and cutting edge Digital Sports Applications to enrich the experience at major events and deliver commercial impact for sponsors and partners. The company has a 20-year history in providing its various solutions for many top-tier domestic and international events, organizations, teams and companies, with proven success and turn-key solutions across 1000+ events, 160+ cities and 50+ countries globally.
World Soccer Shop
Launched in 2001, World Soccer Shop is an online soccer retailer based in Birmingham, Alabama. It carries one of the world’s widest selections of officially-licensed products from the sport’s top brands and teams. World Soccer Shop is passionate about soccer and endeavors to spread the beautiful game around the world, especially to those in areas of need. For more information, please visit www.worldsoccershop.com.