Soccer Across America Brings Soccer to Underserved Communities

Soccer Across America is a sports participation program designed to introduce the sport of soccer to children living in economically depressed areas. The program targets disadvantaged children in rural, suburban and urban areas who need an activity outside of school, in their own environment. The philosophy of Soccer Across America is that all children can benefit from an exposure to the sport, regardless of the level of parental involvement or ability to pay.

Through a cooperative effort by US Youth Soccer, STYSA and local organizations, Soccer Across America builds a "grass roots" program that uniquely fills the need of the community and children involved. Through the efforts of these support groups, soccer provides a tool to increase participants’ self-esteem, provide positive role models and build social and life skills, while at the same time providing exercise, fun and pride for the children.

Soccer Across America targets at-risk boys and girls from the ages of 6 to 18 years of age. These children may be classified at-risk due to:

  • low household income
  • exposure to crime and drugs
  • language and cultural barriers (Soccer Across America is an excellent means of assimilating children of first-generation Americans into the mainstream culture)
  • children of single parent homes
  • children with learning disabilities
  • children without any organized after-school supervision (latchkey)
  • children who score low on TASP state testing and need additional motivation to excel in school

STYSA provides information and guidance to Member Associations in development of their Soccer Across America programs. STYSA coordinates the distribution of equipment provided for the Soccer Across America programs, and may provide limited financial assistance at the association’s request.

If you have questions, or are interested in locating or starting a Soccer Across America program in your area, contact the STYSA office at 512-272-4553.

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