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New Independent City in the Community Study Findings Revealed

4,000 NYC Kids Across 5 Boroughs Participate in CITC’s Free Programming at More Than 20 Schools and Community Pitches

New York, N.Y., September 27, 2018 – New York City Football Club (NYCFC) today announced the results of a new independent, third-party report studying the impact that City in the Community (CITC) – the charity proudly supported by the Club – is having in New York City. Each year, CITC brings soccer-based community programming to more than 4,000 young New Yorkers across the five boroughs through free year-round after school and weekend programming. Other core programs include lessons on nutrition and lifestyle, Saturday Night Lights (SNL), academic support, cognitive behavioral therapy and youth advocacy. CITC has proudly served more than 30,000 young people across the five boroughs since its launch in NYC in 2014.

This research examines the costs of delivery and the impact of the programs at Lexington Academy and P.S. 24 on participants. The study found a $4.50 return in health benefits for every $1.00 invested in CITC NYC programs.

Other key findings from the report include:

  • 90% of respondents reported engagement in physical activity has increased since getting involved in CITC
  • 98% of 8-10 year olds said CITC activities encouraged them to eat more healthily
  • 69% of 11-19 year olds felt the program “definitely” helped them stay in school or college
  • 55% of older participants reported improved confidence since beginning their involvement with CITC
  • 52% of older respondents in East Harlem said attending the program helped them reduce or prevent involvement in crime

Download full report here.

“In a few short years, City in the Community has become vital to helping kids across New York City stay in school and get active,” said Jon Patricof, President of New York City FC. “New York City FC is committed to being an active member of our community, and we’re incredibly proud to support the New Yorkers who serve as coaches, young leaders, volunteers and mentors who help these programs flourish.”

“In the neighborhoods we serve, City in the Community’s programming has proven to be an essential need for youth where it can be easier to join a gang than a team,” said Paul Jeffries, Director of Community Development at New York City FC. “At its best, sport can serve as a source of strength and inspiration to help youth believe in themselves and achieve their potential. I’m thrilled to see this new study shows our work is doing exactly that.”

“By taking areas across New York City that were underserved and turning them into active, vibrant and appealing places for our kids to play soccer, we are tackling inequalities in all its forms, including in our schools, parks and outdoor spaces,” said Toya Williford, Executive Director of the Mayor’s Fund to Advance NYC. “This data helps underscore how critical it is to make sure young New Yorkers have access to high quality, free programing that organizations like NYCFC and CITC provide. We are proud to partner with NYCFC to support the NYC Soccer Initiative.”

“Since 2011, Saturday Night Lights (SNL) has given teens a safe place to play in their own communities, embodying my office’s philosophy that a crime prevented is far better than a crime prosecuted,” said Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr. “But as this report shows, programs like SNL offer benefits that extend far beyond the justice system, like promoting healthier eating habits and improving educational and career outcomes. I would like to thank the New York City Football Club and City in the Community for their ongoing partnership on SNL and for all that they’re doing to lift up New York’s communities.”

Building off these positive findings, NYCFC and partners are taking CITC’s groundbreaking approach to youth sport and bringing it citywide. NYCFC has teamed up with the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City, adidas, U.S. Soccer Foundation and Etihad Airways to launch New York City Soccer Initiative (NYCSI), a first-of-its-kind public-private partnership to build 50 mini-soccer pitches across all five boroughs of New York City. The partners will be unveiling the next group of 11 NYCSI soccer pitches later this fall, bringing the total to 20 community pitches. These new soccer fields will be essential in keeping young New Yorkers safe, active and connected in the community.  

Download full report here.

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