Football3 tournament in Times Square

Football Effect: Saturday Night Lights Program Participates in football3 Tournament

Participants from the Saturday Night Lights (SNL) program participated in streetfootballworld USA’s inaugural North America and Caribbean football3 training and tournament on July 10-12 in New York City.

Angel D., Charles, Piero, Angel B., Amy, Emily and Katherine were part of the undefeated team representing the Saturday Night Lights program and City in the Community and shared the honor of the Fairplay Award. This outstanding team of young athletes and leaders demonstrated strong teamwork, communication and sportsmanship.

The football3 training brought together a few of the top soccer non-profit organizations for an intensive weekend focused on the football3 methodology. Community coaches, Jorge Guiracocha and Emily Campos, represented City in the Community and took part in the football3 training. Football3 is a unique approach to playing soccer based on the values of fair play, gender equality, teamwork and respect. The methodology is named after its ‘three halves’— a pre-match discussion, a soccer game and post-match discussion. Coaches from eight organizations joined streetfootballworld USA for a one-day intensive training on the methodology.

The weekend culminated on July 12 with a football3 tournament at the Times Square Cup hosted by Street Soccer USA. The trained coaches facilitated matches between local delegations comprised of New York City youth. Fast-paced matches took place on two courts in the heart of New York City. The City in the Community team had the opportunity to play delegations from around New York City, and ended up tying South Bronx United in the championship match.

“The kids all voiced their concerns, adapted to rule changes and showed great sportsmanship,” Coach Campos said. “It was an exciting and competitive final.”

The success of this young team proved the skills and lessons learned in the SNL programs are spreading well beyond just the pitch.

All of the players participate in a weekly program funded by the District Attorney’s Office in an effort to reduce youth violence and support the academic endeavors of young adults in New York City. The participants use the skills and knowledge acquired on the soccer field in other areas of their life such as academics, internships and interpersonal relationships.