50 NEW SOCCER FIELDS COMING TO UNDERSERVED NEIGHBORHOODS

MAYOR DE BLASIO, MAYOR’S FUND TO ADVANCE NYC, U.S. SOCCER FOUNDATION, NYC FOOTBALL CLUB AND ADIDAS LAUNCH NYC SOCCER INITIATIVE – BRINGING 50 NEW SOCCER FIELDS TO UNDERSERVED NEIGHBORHOODS

 

Over the next five years, public-private partnership will invest $3 million in fields across the five boroughs, afterschool programming for 10,000 kids

 

NEW YORK––Speaking at Millbrook Houses playground in the Mott Haven section of the South Bronx, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the launch of the New York City Soccer Initiative, a public-private partnership that will build and maintain 50 soccer fields in underserved neighborhoods across the five boroughs over the next five years. Fields will begin to open for play as early as next year.

 

The Mayor’s Fund to Advance NYC, the U.S. Soccer Foundation, the New York City Football Club and adidas are partners in the new $3 million New York City Soccer Initiative.

 

“These new soccer fields will be essential in keeping our young New Yorkers safe, active and connected with the community. With this partnership, we are tackling inequalities in all its forms – including in our parks and outdoor spaces,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “In the city of immigrants, with so many different languages and cultures, the New York City Soccer Initiative will be one of the great tools we use to unify young New Yorkers.”

 

,” said Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. “The City Soccer Initiative will open the doors to a whole new world for kids who may otherwise not have access to these programs. Healthy kids grow up to be productive adults, and I thank the administration, the New York City Football Club, adidas and the U.S. Soccer Foundation for giving South Bronx and East Harlem children the opportunity to experience the exciting world of soccer,” said Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito.

 

“This is a special day for the New York City Football Club. Community has been an integral part of this Club since the very beginning,” said Jon Patricof, President of New York City Football Club. “We have seen through the work of our extensive community programs that soccer has the ability to change lives. This initiative will give access to pitches and help us deliver our programming to thousands of New York City school kids in every borough, and we are thrilled to be a part of it”

 

“We believe that through sports, we have the power to change people’s lives,” said Ernesto Bruce, Senior Director of Soccer for adidas. “Sports gives young people so many amazing social, emotional and physical benefits that reward them for life. But there’s a lot threatening sports today – including safe access for kids to play. Today’s announcement to create and maintain 50 soccer fields, spread across the five boroughs of New York City will help bring sports to more kids, giving them a sense of team and community they might not otherwise have.”

New York City Football Club players, David Villa, Frank Lampard and Jason Hernandez; and Head Coach Patrick Vieira; and Sporting Director Claudio Reyna joined the announcement, which comes with a pledge from all four partners to invest a total of $3 million to build and maintain the fields and provide free programming for New York City school children focused on healthy, active living and mentorship.

“The Bronx suffers from disproportionately high rates of obesity, asthma, heart disease, and other chronic health issues. This new initiative will play an important role in combating these health disparities by creating state-of-the-art soccer fields that will encourage physical activity and promote healthier living,” said State Senator Jose M. Serrano.

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