Updated:ORLANDO, Fla. —
The Orlando City Soccer Foundation (OCSF) kicks off 2013 with exciting initiatives to give back to the Orlando community through outreach programs and services targeted at children and families, including building two soccer fields in the Parramore area. The soccer fields, which would be lit, outdoor turf pitches, are meant to provide a safe place to play while promoting healthy lifestyles.
“Reaching out to our local community using the powerful platform of sport is imperative,” said Foundation Chair Kay Rawlins. “Our main focus is promoting a healthy lifestyle for children, such as eating healthy and engaging in exercise. The project is important because it will provide a safe place to play for kids in the community while also teaching them about a healthy lifestyle.”
Through an ongoing process with the US Soccer Foundation, OCSF has targeted Parramore, which is located near downtown Orlando. Providing a soccer facility in the neighborhood will offer children a free and safe place to play, and would be the only soccer facility located in the neighborhood. OCSF hopes to announce that funding has been secured by the end of 2013, with construction starting immediately afterwards.
Placing the two soccer-field facility in Parramore serves as a catalyst to other great benefits for the neighborhood. The Foundation will hire coaches and other necessary staff members to help facilitate soccer activities and maintain the fields. These coaches will provide free guidance and tips for children on the field as well as important life skills that they can use off it.
The Foundation plans on fulfilling other civic duties to the community, such as going to local schools and youth groups to advocate staying active and eating healthy. Many players have already partnered with existing non-profits and civic organizations including ROCK, Easter Seals Disability Services and New Image Youth Center (NIYC). Additionally, team members will provide free soccer clinics for children as part of an ongoing relationship with the NIYC.
“This year will be full of promise,” Rawlins added. “We want to start our initiatives in the heart of Parramore, which will hopefully start a trickle effect throughout Orlando. Preparing the children for the future is something that the whole city of Orlando should be involved in.”
OCSF is a 501 ©3 non-profit organization, and is dedicated to fulfilling the charitable objectives of Orlando City SC by providing outreach programs, services and initiatives for individuals and organizations in need. For more information, visit Orlandocitysoccer.com.