WE BELIEVE - Help us support youth soccer in OKC
Organized by: The Grid Energy FC's Independent Supporters Group
Success! Our campaign goal was achieved!
February 29, 2016
EVENT DATE Feb 28, 2016
As members of The Grid, Energy FC's largest independent supporters group, we believe that soccer has the ability to change lives -- especially those of young children looking for a place to belong. We're asking for the community to help us sponsor at least six (6) 6th grade soccer teams within Oklahoma City.
Youth soccer is a platform for children to:
- learn how to overcome fears and show courage,
- learn how to set goals and plan to achieve them,
- become accountable to a team,
- create stronger bonds with family and friends,
- gain a deeper connection to their community, and
- learn to work for something bigger than themselves.
WE BELIEVE in our city's youth.
WE BELIEVE in helping to create more opportunities for children to play soccer.
In Oklahoma City, not every child has the resources or ability to join a youth soccer team. Expensive registration dues, few volunteer coaches, insufficient marketing, and transportation issues (5+ miles from the designated city park) contributed to a traditional league system that could not accommodate the needs of Oklahoma City neighborhoods. At best, maybe only 10-12 teams would form each year. In the Oklahoma City Public Schools District (OKCPS) alone, there are 46,000 students, with 95% eligible for free and reduced lunch programs; a strong indication of the % of households living in poverty.
Here's the good news, as of Fall 2015 Oklahoma City Police Athletic League (OKC PAL) has teamed up with Fields & Futures and Cleats 4 Kids to help launch a new youth little league focusing on the students of OKCPS. The commitments of these three organizations, to provide subsidized registration dues, volunteer coaches, sports equipment, and field maintenance, has allowed for Oklahoma City Parks & Recreation (OKC Parks & Rec.) and OKCPS to partner in a way unique to any other metropolitan city in the country.
OKC Parks & Rec. will now start programming a youth little league that will practice and play games at OKCPS middle school sports complexes -- complexes that Fields & Futures has repaired and maintains, e.g., Jefferson, Webster and Taft Middle School.
All students who register will be placed on teams with students also enrolled at their respective elementary school. This intentionality to build rosters within the middle school feeder pattern allows for students and families to never have to travel more than 2.5 miles to attend a practice or scheduled game.
The pilot of the league was so successful in fall 2015, with 6th grade flag football and volleyball, OKC PAL has decided to go in big and rename the league the 'OKCPS Police Athletic League.' OKC PAL will assume the lead role in fundraising to help reduce registration fees; down to $10 per player. In addition, OKC PAL has built a system to onboard volunteer coaches, e.g., police officers, firemen, and local church leaders. Cleats 4 Kids is committed to help outfit all participants with shoes, cleats and necessary safety equipment.
The league will include 6th grade soccer in the spring. It's expected to be their largest league, as soccer is the dominant sport in South Oklahoma City.
In order for the league to be most successful, businesses and individuals need to step up and help with practice equipment, jerseys, clothing and nutrious snacks. This is where The Grid wants to step in.
We Need Your Help:
For every $250 we raise The Grid can sponsor one 6th grade soccer team in the OKCPS Police Athletic League. We will sponsor an equal number of boys and girls teams. We will spread our investment equally across the three organized divisions in spring 2016: Jefferson, Webster & Taft M.S. Divisions.
Our goal is to sponsor at least six (6) soccer teams.
How The Grid will engage each sponsored team:
- $150 will help offset the league's cost to register the team
- $50 will allow us to contribute five (5) soccer balls for the team's practices and games
- $50 will allow us to award every student a #onevoiceonecity wristband and 3' x 3' The Grid patches for their jerseys and backpacks
- The Grid members will visit and speak to each team at their first practice.
- The Grid members will periodically attend games and practices to cheer on the students.
Thank you for believing in something that we feel is important to our city. We will be great stewards of your investment in our city's youth.
References - Websites