Soccer in the Streets had the honor of hosting the Leeds Beckett University Volunteer Program as they visited our youth programs this summer. Since 2016, the volunteer program has worked with our organization and has created something special. The program volunteers strive to be leaders and impact the community. For them, working with Soccer in the Streets has allowed them to have a second family in the United States.
Leeds Beckett University is based in the United Kingdom. The volunteer program encouraging students to have a global experience during their time at University, helping them become global citizens. Leeds Becket is known for its sports programs and their volunteers want to spend part of their summer in the USA, working at summer camps or coaching. The areas they work tend to focus on community-based programs and through a charity with sustainable and ethical values.
This summer, eight wonderful volunteers spent their summer with theSoccer in the Streets youth programs. Not only did they provide coaching expertise at our camps but they raised $1,370 for Team Chelsea in ATL Champions League, held on July 13. All of the funds from the annual event are used to fund the Soccer in the Streets programming.
“We want to give back to the youth of Atlanta that may not have the chance to play otherwise,” said Cara McCosh, Senior Project Officer at Leeds Beckett. “The goal is to engage the youth in conversations around soccer including working as a team which could help them with employability and life skills.”
The volunteers had a chance to explore Atlanta and experience the difference in culture from the UK. One of the stops on their trip was a visit to Atlanta United and the Atlanta United Training Ground where they met with President Darren Eales, a UK native. Eales presented each of the volunteers with an Atlanta United kit.
“It was such an honor to have Darren give them jerseys by hand at the training grounds,” said Tony Carter, Director of Programs at Soccer in the Streets. “To have the MLS team be a part of their trip to the States was amazing and was definitely one of the highlights of the trip.”
This summer made a huge impact on these eight volunteers. Supporting Soccer in the Streets and what we strive for as an organization has shown tremendous efforts from these once college athletes.
“It was an amazing two weeks in Atlanta with the Soccer in the Streets kids,” said Elliot Homes, a Leeds Beckett Volunteer. “It was a pleasure to coach some of the talented players in the youth community programs, whilst also visiting some amazing places.”