By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
May 12, 2020-The coronavirus outbreak has upended our lives in so many ways, including that youth soccer’s Spring Season has been cancelled.
To lift the spirits of their players who are missing soccer, the TOPSoccer Program of the West Hempstead Chiefs Soccer Club organized a Drive-By of its players’ homes last Saturday, May 9. Scores of volunteers met in the parking lot at St. Thomas the Apostle Church at 3 pm and then proceeded to drive-by the 16 players’ homes in West Hempstead, Franklin Square and Malverne.
All the players received a water bottle donated by the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) that was filled with candy and a nice message from their coaches that they are missed. They also received a soccer ball that they can use to practice in their backyard.
“It was great to see so many smiles on our players and volunteers! It was a fun time for all,” commented West Hempstead Chiefs TOPSoccer Director Lauren Lee. “Thank you to Eastern New York Youth Soccer for the water bottles!”
Jessica Lee on left with her mother Lauren
Lauren was the 2018 West Hempstead Herald Person of the Year and her teenage daughter Jessica Lee was recognized as the 2019 TOPSoccer Buddy of the Year. Jessica was honored as the Eastern New York TOPSoccer Buddy of the Year at our Holiday Party last December in the Bronx, she was also named the Regional TOPSoccer Buddy of the Year and celebrated as the National TOPSoccer Buddy of the Year at the United Soccer Coaches Convention in Baltimore last January.
Jessica was going to receive the Marg McGory Award at the Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL) Convention Annual Awards Dinner on March 13 and travel with her mother to Kansas City in late March to attend the US Youth Soccer TOPSoccer Symposium but both events were cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak.
TOPSoccer stands for The Outreach Program for Soccer and it provides a safe and fun environment plus an opportunity for the child who deviates from the average kid in mental, physical or social characteristics and requires modified educational practices and services in order to develop to his or her potential. All the adults organizing TOPSoccer, including coaches and refs, are volunteers.
With approximately 100,000 youth soccer players––both boys and girls––and more than 25,000 volunteers, the non-profit Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) stretches from Montauk Point, Long Island to the Canadian border. Members are affiliated with nine leagues throughout the association, which covers the entire state of New York east of Route 81. ENYYSA exists to promote and enhance the game of soccer for children and teenagers between the ages of 5 and 19 years old, and to encourage the healthy development of youth players, coaches, referees and administrators. All levels of soccer are offered––from intramural, travel team and premier players as well as Children With Special Needs. No child who wants to play soccer is turned away. ENYYSA is a proud member of the United States Soccer Federation and United States Youth Soccer Association. For more information, please log on to http://www.enysoccer.com/, which receives nearly 300,000 hits annually from the growing soccer community.