Natasha moved to the U.S. from Puerto Rico when she was in 4th grade. Living only a block from the soccer field, Natasha watched the neighborhood kids come together for Soccer for Success. In 5th grade, she decided to join them and signed up for the program. Now in 8th grade, Natasha hasn’t missed a season, and joined the local soccer club so she could play year-round.
Soccer has played a huge role in Natasha’s life, and has taught her lessons both on and off the field. “I used to be short-tempered, but now instead I listen to everyone’s point of view and treat others the way I want to be treated. I learned that at soccer,” she says. “I am not the greatest soccer player, but it is not just about skills. It is about helping each other.”
Natasha says her favorite aspects of Soccer for Success are “the lessons the coaches teach me about teamwork and respect and discipline.”
Not only has Natasha matured off the pitch, but she has also grown as a player. “I admire Natasha because she leads by example,” says Coach-Mentor Carlos. “She is eager to learn new things and demonstrate to the team the skills we work on. She works hard at practice, and her enthusiasm motivates other players, making it easier and more enjoyable to coach. She is a leader inside and outside the field. Over the past year with Soccer for Success, I have seen Natasha mature to become a leader, yet maintain her own personality.”
When she isn’t on the soccer field, Natasha plays the viola and enjoys learning about world history and social studies. When Natasha grows up, she wants to be a soccer player or join the army. But for now, her goals are “to become a better player and better student.”
Keep up the great work, Natasha!