I've had the pleasure to have volunteered with Soccer Without Borders since 2008, and I know first hand what an incredible difference they make in the lives of newcomer and refugee youth throughout the USA. I started volunteering as a summer camp soccer coach with SWB in Oakland, CA. The Soccer Without Borders soccer camp was a highlight both of my summers and those of the many incredible children I got to know and coach. In Oakland the camps brought together students who had found their way to California from all parts of the world, We had students from Myanmar, Liberia, Somalia, Sudan, Iraq, Afghanistan, Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, to name just a few. While their love for soccer brought these children together, SWB's camp was about so much more than soccer. We had activities that helped the kids build community and trust across cultures and languages. Inside the comfortable and safe space of a soccer field, the students also learned more English, found new friends, and discussed how to live a healthy lifestyle, physically and mentally, in their city and neighborhoods. I've watched as SWB has grown and been able to provide more and more opportunities for support in summer and throughout the year. For the fortunate refugees and newcomers who have access to SWB, the organization now provides robust support to them and their families year round.My favorite moments with SWB always include seeing kids from totally different parts of the world, who share a history of turbulence, upheaval, and trauma, bonding together, laughing, and finding joy in their new home country. This doesn't happen by accident. SWB is so conscientious about how they train their staff and volunteers to run great youth programs and also how to be refugee/newcomer/trauma sensitive. I've also had the chance to see what an impact SWB can make for students over many years. I rejoice when I see that students who I coached almost 10 years ago, who could hardly speak a word of English and felt very shy, are now coaches themselves - helping to promote a program that helped them.Soccer Without Borders is an incredible nonprofit that is doing amazing work with some of the most vulnerable youth in our country.
I was an intern at SWB Baltimore's elementary/middle school program this summer. The experience, to say the least, was incredible. SWB Baltimore does such an amazing job of running this program so that all the kids are getting the absolute most out of it. Not only do they coach the kids in soccer, they teach them core values that instill skills and qualities that these extraordinary kids are able to carry over into other aspects of their life. I am so lucky and grateful to have gotten this opportunity, and hope to continue my involvement with this organization in the future!
Soccer Without Borders is such an amazing nonprofit that is filled with positive energy! I help with SWB Greeley and Zach, Ryan, and Abby are great people who love what they do! They work very hard to help as many kids as they can by giving them a wonderful place to go. I have been helping for almost a year and been a part of helping with the girls practices, working summer camps, and running a tournament. The participants are amazing people and I love being around them! I have learned so much from the girls and I am looking forward to continued involvement in the future!
I volunteered with Soccer Without Borders in Nicaragua this January and the program exceeded my expectations. The Nica coaches and girls we worked with were some of the most compassionate people I've ever met. I visited Granada for the T.E.A.M. Camp. It was very clear that the motives of this camp were self improvement, fun, and using soccer as a universal language, not extreme competition like many of the youth soccer camps in the U.S. This experience reminded me of the power of soccer and it truly impacted my life in a positive way. I really miss playing, joking, and working hard with the young players and Nica coaches, and even getting egged on my birthday. Thank you SWB!
The week I spent in Grenada, Nicaragua with SWB was the perfect way to start off the new year. This non-profit helped shift my perspective on life for the better while also bringing so many beautiful people into my life. The experience I had in conjunction with the people I met--between the staff, volunteers, and the youth that we worked with--has made such a difference on my life. I learned so much about myself and others through SWB and would recommend this nonprofit to anyone!
This incredible non-profit has shifted my life for the better. I participated in T.E.A.M. camp and met the most incredible human beings I have had the pleasure of meeting. Going to Nicaragua was one of the best experiences of my life. The staff and the board are very grateful to their volunteers for the work that they do. I would go back to Nicaragua tomorrow if I could. As volunteers we had so much to do and there were so many kids to spend time with! It was so much fun and I love the mission of Soccer Without Borders.
I have been involved with Soccer Without Borders (SWB) for several years. I volunteered in Nicaragua in 2012 and most recently at the Kampala Uganda annual Youth Festival. Both times, I was truly moved at the passion and dedication of the staff and volunteers. As a professor of sport sociology, I study organizations that use sport as a tool for development. I can state unequivocally that SWB is a leader in this field. This leadership is evident by the numerous grants and awards SWB has received. SWB has a clear mission with specific outcomes that are continuously measured. I am proud to be associated with such a great organization and look forward to my next volunteer opportunity.
Soccer Without Borders is an incredible nonprofit that has changed the lives of so many. After volunteering with them my junior year of high school, I really saw the magic of the camps and clinics they put on, and how much power there is in sports. SWB's camps provide under-served youth a place to exercise, unwind and forget outside pressures, and grow confident and learn numerous life lessons. This nonprofit is doing absolutely incredible things for these youth!
I have been involved with Soccer Without Borders for a few years. I have volunteered at the SWB Kampala Uganda annual Youth Festival three times and I continue to support the organization, and that location specifically, monetarily each month.
To say that I am a big fan of and a huge believer in SWB would be an understatement. From top to bottom I believe the organization is very well run, has the right value structure, and truly "gets" what it means to help and serve others.
I am always impressed with the dedication and professionalism of SWB's staff members—both those in the U.S. and in Uganda. And, as people often say about volunteer opportunities, I get as much, if not more, out of helping and volunteering with SWB than the kids in Uganda that I am assisting. I've made some great friends through SWB and I always look forward to planning and making my next trip to SWB Kampala. How the organization affects the lives of others, in the U.S. and internationally, is astounding.
I have volunteered at SWB Kampala, Uganda two times in January 2014 and January 2015. Regarding the Kampala program, I have been very impressed with the staff members' commitment, interest in the children, and the immense value they bring to the community. Here in the U.S., the staff members have been top-notch with regards to preparing volunteers, coordinating travel logistics, and being available to answer questions. I continue to assist SWB in a few ways and I think the work the group is doing to help children in the U.S. is extraordinary.
Soccer has the power to bring people from diverse backgrounds together to bond over a
common interest. Soccer Without Borders is a wonderful organization that harnesses that quality for the benefit of Boston's youth. As a coach, I've watched the players start the program playing as individuals and finish playing as a team. The kids build confidence,
establish long-lasting friendships, and learn to respect each other and different cultures, all while having a lot of fun. Soccer Without Borders is an asset to the community.
I love volunteering with SWB! As a coach, I've never been a part of an organization with such a positive philosophy toward its players. It is not only extremely refreshing, but also perfectly on mission as a community who wants to use the game of soccer to build up young people, many of whom have had lots of reasons to feel torn down. As the founder of a different nonprofit organization, I know that culture trumps slogans every time. SWB has created a culture worthy of its mission to our cities' most at-risk young people, each of which feel loved and valued at SWB.
I began helping out this organization six months ago, after learning about the charity while helping to tutor students from the Oakland International High School. Soccer without Borders does a phenomenal job of using soccer as a medium to help newly arrived children/students to acclimate to their new home. All of the SWB people I have met are truly committed and incredibly devoted. Their work with the children goes beyond soccer - helping them with their academics, college prep, and general life coaching. I couldn't say enough to convey how this organization helps these kids - I am lucky to be a part of this organization.
I've been coaching with SWB going on 3 years now, and having worked with dozens of charities throughout my life, I can honestly say they are by far one of my favorites. The influence that this program has on the lives on the players involved cannot be quantified, and the bonds of friendship and togetherness that are built seem unbreakable. In addition to them fulfilling their mission day in day out, the management of the program has been equally impressive. Running programs in four major cities across the United States as well as two in Africa is no small feat, and the SWB team has done an amazing job on all fronts. I hope to continue having the opportunity to be a part of this organization as long as possible.
This is now my second season volunteering with SWB and it has been a great experience. The kids are always so happy to get right into whatever we have planned for them and to see the growth over the past few months has been amazing. The program is so well thought through and really is well positioned to create change in the community given the positive outlet it is providing these children that otherwise may not have this opportunity. It is great to have children active and learning the fundamentals of soccer but also the integral parts of the game like respect and teamwork. The interactions I have with the children are always entertaining and I can see myself volunteering for this organization for years to come!
I've been a volunteer with SWB for several months now. It's amazing seeing the impact that this program has within the Baltimore communities. The SWB Baltimore staff has done an incredible job of planning and executing meaningful events with the students and their families and friends. The beauty of SWB is that you can witness the results of your work every day whether it be the smiles on the kids' faces or seeing a student get into college!
Going into this program I had no idea what to expect, but when I arrived in Granada I soon realized that my one week stay was going to be better than I had ever hoped. The love the girls had for the program was like nothing I had ever seen before and it was easy to tell how much Soccer Without Borders meant to them. All of the staff and girls welcomed me with open arms and the dedication of the staff was amazing. My experience with SWB opened my eyes and when I arrived back in the U.S. after only one week with the organization, I felt like a completely changed person. I cannot think of the past summer without reminiscing of this amazing experience.
Soccer Without Borders is an incredible charity that benefits anyone who comes in contact with the organization. Soccer has the power to bring people of all backgrounds together. Soccer Without Borders is a well organized program. In Nicaragua, the head directors and coaches are very passionate about the program and work extremely hard to make sure all the girls have everything they need. As a volunteer, I was able to learn more about the Nicaraguan culture and experience the girls passion to play. It was an incredible experience and I recommend getting involved with this charity in any way possible.
Review from Guidestar
I happened to stumble upon a Soccer Without Borders application when a teammate told me that she had applied in the previous month. I applied for the program not knowing that this program would lead to an experience that would have a lasting impact on my life. I embarked on my first international journey and I am so happy that it was to Granada, Nicaragua. The hidden beauty in the houses, streets, culture, and people there have stole my heart and make me want to go back very soon. After returning to the states, that was when I realized how many girls I inspired on my trip. I would recommend Soccer Without Borders to everyone and anyone.
Review from Guidestar
No words can describe how incredible this experience has been. I will hopefully continue to be a part of this amazing program because it carries so much greatness. Not only do you become a part of a program that gives hope, attention, love, etc. to young girls but those young girls also give you all those things and more. I am so thankful I found Soccer Without Borders.
Review from Guidestar
I have been volunteering for Soccer Without Borders for about 2 years as a coach now and have coached various age groups and teams. I started with the elementary school program, then coached the U14 girls and am now coaching the U12 boys.
Throughout my time coaching I noticed how this program is really making a difference in East Boston. The kids are becoming more integrated, engaged, and confident. Not only on the field but also off the field.
The Boston office is run by a group of awesome, organized, and enthusiastic people who have become dear friends of mine. Volunteers are being well prepared for the coaching seasons and regular feedback and brainstorming sessions help improve the experience.
Coaching kids is both challenging and incredibly rewarding. You learn a lot, not only about the kids but also about yourself. I can only recommend to anyone who has even the slightest interest in soccer to volunteer for such a great organization like Soccer Without Borders!