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Newest Miami-Dade Soccer Initiative Mini-Pitch Opens in Hialeah

Hialeah, FL – A new soccer mini-pitch is officially open at Bright Park in Hialeah. This project marks the latest development in the Miami-Dade Soccer Initiative, a $10 million campaign to enable the installation of 50 new mini-pitches in Miami-Dade County as well as expand programming across the county. Spearheaded by Griffin Catalyst, The Children’s Trust, and the U.S. Soccer Foundation, the initiative is to dramatically increase opportunities for children living in under-resourced communities across the county to play and benefit from soccer.

Against the backdrop of Miami-Dade—a growing hub for the game in the United States—the Bright Park mini-pitch is positioned to expand access to soccer and its many benefits for youth and families in Hialeah. In addition to providing a safe place for free play, the City of Hialeah is also set to run the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s Just Ball League at the mini-pitch.

A reimagination of youth soccer in the United States, the Just Ball League promotes elements of pick-up soccer, using mini-pitches and other community areas for hyper-local play. The league is led by Playmakers—who serve as both mentors and coaches—who encourage players to express themselves. Participation in the league is free for youth, removing barriers, such as transportation and cost, that often prohibit children in underserved communities from playing the game.

“It was an exciting morning as we celebrated the grand opening of the first Mini-Pitch in the City of Hialeah at Bright Park, made possible through the incredible partnership of Griffin Catalyst, The Children’s Trust, and the U.S. Soccer Foundation,” said City of Hialeah Mayor Esteban Bovo, Jr. “This initiative not only enhances the facility, but it now allows our Parks and Recreation Department, through a partnership, to offer a new program, Just Ball League, tailored to both the local community and soccer enthusiasts alike. These partnerships are part of our commitment to continue improving our parks’ services to the residents. It presents a fantastic opportunity to promote physical activity, teamwork, and community engagement. We eagerly anticipate the positive impact this Mini-Pitch will have on Bright Park and the residents in the area, providing a community hub for play.”

“While soccer is having its moment in the spotlight in the lead-up to the 2026 Men’s World Cup, we want millions of kids to have their moment, too,” said U.S. Soccer Foundation President & CEO Ed Foster-Simeon. “It is what makes the work of the Miami-Dade Soccer Initiative so important. We are passionate about what we’re building here in Miami and across the nation as we ensure that the World Cup leaves a legacy and improves the lives of youth for generations to come.”

“We firmly believe that children deserve the opportunity to participate in sports, regardless of their family’s financial standing,” said James R. Haj, president & CEO of The Children’s Trust. “The Miami-Dade Soccer Initiative, particularly with the implementation of the Just Ball League on this new mini-pitch, tackles these barriers head-on. By offering free, accessible play in communities across Miami-Dade County, we empower children in underserved areas to experience the joy and benefits of sports.”

At the opening event, students from Flamingo Elementary School join City of Hialeah Mayor Esteban Bovo, Jr., President & CEO of the U.S. Soccer Foundation Ed Foster-Simeon, Griffin Catalyst’s Julia Quinn, and The Children’s Trust President & CEO James R. Haj for an official “first kick” and scrimmages on the new pitch.

Miami-Dade Soccer Initiative partners anticipate that the initiative’s efforts will improve the health and well-being of at least 36,000 youth in South Florida by 2030.

The Bright Park mini-pitch is also one of more than 650 mini-pitches the U.S. Soccer Foundation has installed across the United States to date on its path to opening 1,000 mini-pitches across the country by 2026.

To access event photos, click here.


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. For more information visit or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.


Griffin Catalyst is the civic engagement initiative of Citadel founder and CEO Ken Griffin, encompassing his philanthropic and community impact efforts. Tackling the world’s greatest challenges in innovative, action-oriented, and evidence-driven ways, Griffin Catalyst is dedicated to expanding opportunity and improving lives across six areas of focus: Education, Science & Medicine, Upward Mobility, Freedom & Democracy, Enterprise & Innovation, and Communities. For more information, visit

About The Children’s Trust

The Children’s Trust is a dedicated source of revenue established by voter referendum to fund strategic investments that improve the lives of all children and families in Miami-Dade County. For more information visit and follow us on social media.