Hockessin Soccer Club (Hockessin, DE)
The Hockessin Soccer Club has been serving the communities of northern Delaware and southern Chester County for more than seven years through US Youth Soccer TOPSoccer. The grant will contribute to expanding the program from an already impressive status, which includes a fully handicap accessible clubhouse and turf field.
Blackstone Millville Youth Soccer Association (Blackstone, MA)
Blackstone Millville TOPSoccer initiated their program with 14 members in spring 2007 and grew to 23 members by fall 2007. Receiving this grant will give TOPSoccer the opportunity to continue pursuing their goal of providing the opportunity for every boy or girl in the Blackstone area with a physical or cognitive disability to learn and play the game of soccer.
Just for Kicks, Northport Youth Soccer League (Northport, NY)
As a young program that began in fall 2007, Just for Kicks, a division of Northport Youth Soccer League, achieved great success. Weekly practices with an average attendance of 25-30 players, generous volunteers and coaches helped to make the inaugural season a success. By the end of fall 2007, there were 38 children listed on the Just for Kicks TOPSoccer Roster.
Lakes Area Youth Soccer League (West Bloomfield, MI)
Since 2005, Lakes Area Youth Soccer League TOPSoccer has grown to an average of 50 players and continues to increase player enrollment numbers each season. The community of West Bloomfield has embraced the program by providing the TOPSoccer players with their own field for games and practices. The grant will provide Lakes Area TOPSoccer the opportunity to continue to encouraging participation of all kids, regardless of disability, to play soccer in a fun, safe and semi-competitive way in order to foster teamwork, friendships, skills and a sense of belonging.
South Huntington Soccer Club (Huntington, NY)
The South Huntington Soccer Club recognized the need to implement TOPSoccer in their community when they realized that of the 6,000 students enrolled in the South Huntington School District, over 550 were special needs students. With the assistance of the US Youth Soccer TOPSoccer grant, the new program hopes to give a positive experience to all players in an effort to boost their self-esteem.
SoccerMaine TOPSoccer (Portland, ME)
For over nine years, Soccer Maine TOPSoccer has been providing opportunities for special needs children ages 8 – 19 in Portland and surrounding communities. Through the awarded grant, the program seeks to provide opportunities for building skills in the area of problem solving, leadership and civic engagement, as well as, healthy behaviors. In accordance with the TOPSoccer Buddies, Soccer Maine TOPSoccer works to promote a sense of community and caring by bringing together young people from the Greater Portland Community who can mentor students with special needs within the program.
Ohio Youth Soccer Association – North
The Ohio Youth Soccer Association – North helps build member club's TOPSoccer programs throughout the state's organization in efforts to expand membership. For existing programs, Ohio Youth Soccer will begin to hold ""play days"" to help grow the level of community awareness and involvement. They will also work to expand the program to other non-participating member clubs.
Cincinnati TOPSoccer (Cincinnati, OH)
Cincinnati TOPSoccer looks to grow their program by adding more coaches, volunteers, fields and equipment. The grant awarded to Cincinnati TOPSoccer will serve to expand the scope of current TOPSoccer initiatives in Dayton, Columbus, Cincinnati and northern Kentucky as they continue to enable children with physical or cognitive disabilities. As Cincinnati area TOPSoccer continues to increase membership and the number of programs available in each area, they will work the educate coaches and volunteers, as well as, parents and siblings of TOPSoccer players.
Gainesville Soccer Alliance (Gainesville, FL)
The Gainesville Soccer Alliance Top Kickers program serves the families of Alachua County area as they gather every Sunday at 8 a.m. to play soccer while integrating able bodied and disabled kids with a core group of volunteers from the University of Florida. The development of the Top Kickers began with two clinics as a way to see how the community would respond. In the short year Top Kickers has been in play, there has been an overwhelming response with continual growth and player membership numbers reaching upwards of 40 registrants. The inaugural season was set to run for six weeks, but extended to a 10-week season because everyone involved was responsive and excited to continue play.
Oldsmar Soccer Club TOPSoccer (Clearwater, FL)
With strict eligibility requirements restricting some from participating in Special Olympics, the need for TOPSoccer within the Oldsmar Soccer Club area was evident. In response to this need, Oldsmar Soccer Club initiated TOPSoccer in March 2006. Not only do they focus on enhancing the lives of young athletes with disabilities, but they are working to teach able bodied members of the Oldsmar Soccer Club the value of volunteering as members serve as buddies in TOPSoccer. Oldsmar Soccer Club TOPSoccer will use grant funding from US Youth Soccer to better achieve their goals and mission to reach as many special needs children as possible and to let them enjoy the experience of soccer.
South Lakes Soccer Club (Oklahoma City, OK)
The South Lakes Soccer Club has their goals set high for TOPSoccer in the area. The program kicked off in March 2008, with commitments from a coach who is experienced in teaching and training children with special needs and South Lakes Soccer Club's competitive soccer teams, which have committed to providing a volunteer buddy for each TOPSoccer participant. Located within the Moore Public Schools, consisting of roughly 20,000 students, of which, 12 to 15 percent of its students are in special education, South Lakes Soccer Club TOPSoccer hopes to enroll at least 40 players during its initial season.
Alameda Contra Costa Youth Soccer League TOPSoccer (El Cerrito, CA)
After one year of operating the Alameda Contra Costa Youth Soccer League TOPSoccer, over 20 families who have children with special needs became involved and plan to return in the following season. Through the US Youth Soccer TOPSoccer grant, TOPSoccer in the El Cerrito, Calif. area will continue grow in the spring and fall seasons allowing for additional teams to be formed. The goal of their program is to ensure that children with special needs can have the same experiences as other kids in community based soccer.
El Diablo Youth Soccer League TOPSoccer – Division 5 (Brentwood, CA)
Success of the three-year-old El Diablo Youth Soccer League TOPSoccer Division 5 program continues as it expands its membership to surpass the over 75 members currently enrolled and add another team to create a total of four teams. Weekly games and practices are held for all TOPSoccer players to enjoy a soccer in a relaxed and fun environment. The program plans to participate in the second annual TOPSoccer Pumpkinfest soccer tournament, which includes teams from surrounding TOPSoccer programs.
Elk Grove Youth Soccer League TOPSoccer Club (Elk Grove, CA)
The Elk Grove Youth Soccer League approved TOPSoccer in December 2007. The US Youth Soccer Grant will allow Elk Grove TOPSoccer Club to continue growing in numbers. In its first year, there was an incredible response, with over 40 players joining the fun for play days and tournament. They anticipate having four teams by the time the fall season approaches. An overwhelming response from the community and volunteers has contributed to the first-year success of Elk Grove TOPSoccer Club, as they currently have more volunteers and buddies than they do players.