New York City
**Check out our new Practice and Event Calendar at the bottom of the page!
SSNYC Directors: Julie Platt, Eric Chandler and Caleb Olson
SSNYC Volunteer Coaches: Robyn Crawford-Smith, Stephen Hile, Spryos Kallipolitis
SSNYC Head Volunteers: Nell Baird, Courtney Bernabei, Amy Farkas, Janice Greenwald, Susan Medina, Suzannah Herbert
Organization: HELP USA & The Doe Fund
About the Program
The goal of Street Soccer USA is to use the power of team sports to help people move off the street, out of shelter, and into sustainable independent living. The New York program’s systematic approach is designed to build trust, self-esteem, discipline, and basic financial literacy through sports. Mentoring and goal setting practices are designed to push people ahead faster and farther than they ever thought possible; and to address barriers like drug addiction and mental instability head on.
The Street Soccer USA New York team, in its third year, is organized by HELPUSA out of three shelters: the Supportive Employment Center, the Clarke Thomas Next Step program, and the Brownsville Women's Center. The 16 members of the men's team trains every Monday and Wednesday at Help SEC
on Wards Islands in a repaired gymnasium, formally used only for storage. The team is also proud to announce the Doe Fund as a new partner! The women's team will resume training in the Spring at the Help Brownsville Womens Center
When the Street Soccer New York program started, only 6 percent of participants were working (one out of 16); now 69 percent (11 out of 16) are employed: eight part-time and three full-time. Similarly, 88 percent of participants (14 out of 16) have either found work, housing, or recuperated their legal status in the United States since joining the program: four players are not working and living independently, and seven additional players are working and moving out of the shelter soon.
In terms of immigration and documentation, similar impacts have been made. At the start of the program, six players lacked proper documentation. Currently, four players have approval for green cards, two are currently in possession and one is on track to receive green card; four other players have obtained birth certificates, state IDs and passports, and one is currently working on acquiring the documents.
In The Media
For the past few years, the team competed in an Adult Soccer League at Chelsea Piers playing teams of bankers and lawyers from the area. After defeating a team of bankers and corporate professionals, the team received national attention in The New York Times
and NBC’s The Today Show
. The team has also been recognized by Rueters and was most recently a part of Nike's Better World campaign! Check out the videos below: