LA84 Foundation and Herb Wesson help launch pilot soccer program for at risk youth

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Los Angeles City Council President Herb J. Wesson and the LA84 Foundation will partner on Monday, August 14 to celebrate the launch of Street Soccer USA’s pilot program in Los Angeles. The program is designed to fight poverty and empower young people to become problem solvers in their communities.

Councilman Herb Wesson, Jr.

The councilman and Street Soccer USA predict that at least one-third of the young people taking part in the program will be homeless. The rest will be living in or near poverty. This LA pilot program was started with a $75,000 grant from the LA84 Foundation.

According to the Los Angeles Unified School District 15,000 students are homeless at any one time. Many more live on the verge of homelessness.

In a press release Councilman Wesson said, “It’s up to us to push the envelope, not protect the status quo, when it comes to finding ways to support and empower our city’s vulnerable youth. This innovative program will not only provide young members of our community with access to sports, but it will also teach them to be determined, courageous and ambitious on and off the field.”

The young people served by this program will not only learn how to play soccer, they will learn life skills that will help them as the grow into adulthood. The program will have an emotional learning curriculum that will give the kids life and job readiness skills.

Street Soccer USA Times Square Tournament in July (Facebook)

“The LA84 Foundation thanks Council President Wesson for his leadership on this issue,” said LA84 Foundation President and CEO Renata Simril. She added: “The transformational power of sport is saving lives in our communities. The physical and emotional benefits of sport and structured play gives kids confidence and hope, and the LA84 Foundation strongly supports programs like Street Soccer USA providing #PlayForAll access to improve the quality of life for our youth who need it most.”

Rob and Lawrence Cann, Founders of Street Soccer USA, said, “We believe in the promise of our community and all it as members. We believe that relationships change lives and in the unique power of soccer to create those relationship. We want to thank the LA84 Foundation and Herb Wesson for showing up for the community. Together we will help realize the promise of our participants starting this Fall and over the long term.”

The launch of the program will be Monday, August 14 at 11 a.m., at the LA84 Foundation: 2141 West Adams Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90018.

Top photo from LA84 Foundation Facebook page