This is a very important program for refugee youth who face a range of challenges such as isolation, language barriers, trauma and the need to learn American culture and values. It’s our aim that this program contributes to the growth and development of soccer in the USA and it’s a way of building harmony and social integration across communities within Syracuse through support for soccer. There are talented refugee youth soccer players that we believe could make it to the MLS and because their parents cannot afford to pay the registration fees for the soccer camps our Association will be a bridge to help connect them to resources.
As we look for means and ways to positively assimilate troubled immigrant youth, we find that sports have a positive physical and mental impact. We think the time spent on organized sports would replace the time the youth could be spending on other risky activities, for instance, drugs and crimes.