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Youth Soccer

The East Phillips Improvement Coalition (EPIC) is a resident-led citizen participation organization established in 2000 to serve the East Phillips Neighborhood. Andersen is the local elementary school. MPNAI is also a resident-led citizen participation organization for the adjoining neighborhood along East Phillips’ west side. This project supported the second year of the East/Midtown Phillips Youth (EMPY) Sports and Recreation Community Action Initiative. It was designed to address both a need for supervised sports activities for immigrant youth in the winter/spring months and to respond to the lack of academic success among those same youth at Andersen Elementary School. At the time East and Midtown Phillips were partnering in a soccer practice at the school gym and heard concerns from attending parents regarding their students’ lack of academic success. EPIC and Midtown Phillips joined with Andersen School to organize this project using the successful soccer program to draw attendance for after-school homework help. Over 400 hundred soccer players and their families are involved every Sunday. About 90% are Latino, with a significant number of Somali players. Most live in the Phillips, Central and Powderhorn neighborhoods. The youth have experienced a stronger sense of community, a greater ability to make their needs known and act to bring about change and believe their families have been well served academically and with regard to their involvement in the soccer program. Success include: improving test scores, engaging elected officials and a new soccer field.

Project Award Date: 
Community organization or agency: 
East Phillips Improvement Coalition / Anderson United Community School
Sponsoring CURA Program: 
CURA Contact: 
C Terrence Anderson Director of Community Based Research (612) 624-8988