Every weekend many soccer fans around the world are glued to their television screens to watch their favourite team play, whether it will be Manchester United, Barcelona and so on. Unfortunately, what do not attract media attention are the organisations that work hard to give children opportunity to play the sport billions of people watch every week.
Non-profit organisation HavServe has been working closely with the communities in Haiti since the devastating earthquake in January 2010 by putting in place programs and working on projects to end the extreme poverty that currently exist in Haiti which is also in line with the UN Millennium Development Goals.
One of the programs HavServe is working on is a soccer program that aims to improve the behaviour among the youth. Since the earthquake in Haiti, a large number of children and youth left Port-au-Prince and began migrating back to an area called Lebrun. A situation like this has the potential to increase youth violence and trouble in the rural areas of Haiti.
Just like watching the game of soccer can bring a sense of community among your peers, giving children the opportunity to play the sport can not only bring the community of Lebrun together but give them a more positive outlook on life.
Some of the benefits soccer has already brought to the community include:
- Soccer tournaments within school and between villages encourages the youth to stay in school
- Haitian girls are involved in the sport for the first time
- Youth in the soccer program take part in workshops that raise awareness on AIDS / HIV among the youth
- Program encourages social interaction and healthy living
All this would not be possible with the volunteers that have already assisted with the program. However, they still need more assistance where possible. Every bit counts no matter how big or small. Volunteering gives you the opportunity to improve your skill set, meet new people and more importantly know that what you are doing all contributes to improving lives of people are less fortunate.
The opportunities to assist include:
- Organising a collection of used soccer equipment or uniforms
- Become a volunteer of coach for a week
- Volunteer for the “Field of Dream” Soccer Field
For more information on HavServe soccer program go to: http://www.havserve.org/soccer.php