Months ago (it has been a long time, I know), our friends from Ft Myers, Mark and Brandy, had a great idea of organizing a donation effort for Haiti. I remember them commenting many times about how many “team” jerseys their kids had in their drawers from years of playing youth soccer. They got the idea to organize a donation drive within the the Christian Soccer Association in Ft Myers, FL. They called it Jerseys for Haiti. When the season was finished, all kids were encouraged to donate their jerseys, and any other jerseys sitting in their drawers from teams past. A private school in Ft Myers, The Canterbury School, somehow heard about it and donated all their older team soccer Jerseys as well. The result was 5 large barrels of jerseys!
It took me a little while to sort through them all and decide how and when to distribute them. I had some good “help” too!
When all the sorting was done, we had enough soccer Jerseys to give to 14 young adult and adult teams and 4 volleyball teams (thanks to the Canterbury School), 14 kids teams teams, scrimmage basketball Jerseys for a youth camp, and 2 barrels full of random jerseys to donate to individuals locally to use as everyday clothing (thanks to kids from the Christian Soccer Association.)
I didn’t get a chance to get many pictures of donating the random clothes, but here are a few ladies “shopping.” It’s kind of neat to see kids and adults in our little village of Simon, wearing CSA shirts and Jerseys they received (somehow!) from this endeavor! My gardener, Ramon, has a pink CSA Team Mom shirt he loves to wear. Truthfully, most of these shirts, especially the coaches and team Mom shirts, were hardly worn, so they are in great condition!
One of my stipulations for distributing the Jerseys to teams was that we wanted to be able to come to the games, take some pics, and cheer the teams on. We’ve just started having the opportunity to do this! Here are two local young adult volleyball teams that benefitted from these donations.
On Sunday, we had a chance to go see one of the soccer teams that received a new set of uniforms. This was a team of young men, aged 15-18, who play in a youth league through their school. We picked up 3 of the players and drove to the school they attend. We waited outside with the players for a little while, then the administrator of the school came and opened up a half-finished school building. We all walked thru that and out the back door, over piles of trash and up a long winding, hilly path where we had to dodge two unhappy pigs then up a bigger hill. Rob and I kept looking at each other saying “where are we going?” At the top of the hill, we saw the field.
We sat on the hillside and rooted for the blue team! They won 3-2!
The kids weren’t that into the game, but they sure had fun running around and making new friends. Such a fun way to get involved and be a part of the community.
Overall, a very fun experience! We look forward to going to more soccer games, volleyball games, and checking out the kids teams. When we do, we’ll be sure to take pics and share.
Thanks Mark and Brandy, Christian Soccer Association and the Canterbury School, for making this happen!