Foundation Overview & History
The Gift of Soccer Foundation is a brand and a community supporting the play of the beautiful game and the culture surrounding it. We provide resources and guidance helping kids worldwide to join, play, and grow.
The Gift of Soccer Foundation was started in 2010 by the Levandoski family (Ken, Margie, Kenny, Jessie) as an effort to help those less fortunate players in their local community gain access to basic equipment needed to play soccer. It was astonishing to the founders that the amount of excellent equipment that was quickly out-grown or moved aside was just getting lost. As time passed, the need and opportunities to reach kids worldwide grew rapidly. The foundation has had the honor to assist many established and grassroots organizations with vital business structural consulting. Since it’s inception, the Gift of Soccer Foundation has helped thousands of children worldwide receive new and gently used items collected from various soccer organizations, families, and corporate sponsors.
Youth soccer has so many positive effects in the lives of the participants. Children reap many benefits from playing soccer, including self-discipline, self-confidence, a healthier body, and stronger relationships with peers and adults. The skills children develop while participating in sports translate to their other activities and commitments, including school performance and family relationships. As young athletes develop their bodies, their minds develop simultaneously. Soccer is a fantastic foundation and has skills that can be applied to any other sport that a child may choose to participate.
Many organizations do wonderful things and work very hard at it, but sometimes they need assistance to continue growth and execute at their best. Help can come in the form of fiscal donations, equipment donations, organizational structuring, marketing, and strategic planning. The donations, programs, and consulting we provide, helps organizations become stronger and more efficient at what they do. The better the grassroots organizations perform, the better the soccer infrastructure becomes, and ultimately the children and all of the community benefits.
Tagline – join > play > grow
join > To engage a player or child is to capture their attention. We need to create an environment that is inclusive and will make someone feel comfortable and want to be involved. Once there and engaged, the teaching, sharing, and growing can begin.
play > Play is an essential part of every child’s life and is vital for the enjoyment of childhood as well as the development of social, emotional, intellectual, and physical growth. When children are asked about what they think is important in their lives, playing and friends are usually at the top of the list. BUT play is not just for children, it is just as important for adults to play as well. “The great man is he who does not lose his child’s heart and can play.” – Mencius (371-291 B.C.)
grow > Getting kids involved in sports and community activities help them grow in many ways. Goals achieved can be the discipline to work hard, social skills that are developed, understanding teamwork, passion for a sport that is understood worldwide and makes one part of an enormous community. Some kids may continue to play at higher levels but those are a very special few, most importantly, all can walkaway with something larger than themselves, becoming better individuals, and they can share the gift with others.
Mission – Provide resources & guidance helping kids worldwide to join > play > grow.
Example Program: Working with the US Soccer Federation we manage a “Passback” program. It is a community outreach program for local Soccer teams to collect, recycle and distribute used and new soccer equipment to economically challenged schools, teams, and organizations. The program allows individuals and club soccer teams to share their good fortune and recognize that they can make a positive impact on their fellow players and their sport. More Info Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Why is The Gift of Soccer Foundation a Non-Profit 501(3)(c)?
The simple answer is we wanted to leave the world a better place than we found it? The benefits and structure of a non-profit allows us to maximize the ROI (Return on Investment) of donors, providing maximum benefits to the soccer community. A non-profit is very much like a business. The main difference is that you have to find donors instead of investors. However, donors demand that non-profits be run like businesses. You need solid business skills, plus you need to produce measurable results as the foundation grows. In the beginning, just like a normal business owner, one has to put in long hours, without pay, until the new enterprise is up and going.
We hope you believe in our cause and support the Gift of Soccer Foundation!