CHICAGO, June 4 /PRNewswire/ -- Women's World Cup Soccer Champion Brandi
Chastain today joined hundreds of urban-area elementary school children from
six Chicago public schools at Douglas Park for the Balanced for Life Chicago
SCORES Jamboree! and Shout, Chicago SCORES Program Director Heather Walles
announced today. Sponsored by Balanced for Life, an initiative of the
nation's vending industry to help address skyrocketing childhood obesity
rates, the Jamboree! and Shout is a soccer and poetry festival including
round-robin style tournament games, arts and crafts, and fun activities for
the entire community.
In opening the Jamboree Walles said, "We're all very proud of the work our
students have done over the past year and are excited to watch them showcase
their poetry and soccer skills today. We are also thrilled to have soccer
superstar Brandi Chastain and the support of the nation's vending industry
through their Balanced for Life initiative that helped fund the events we're
Chastain was on the 2004 Olympic Team that took the Gold medal in Athens
and scored the winning goal during the final game of the 1999 Women's World
Cup Championship. She was also a member of the gold-medal winning U.S.
Women's National Team at the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games. At the event
Chastain said, "It's great to see all of you out here today because being
physically active is an important part of staying healthy. And by playing
soccer you can have fun with your friends at the same time."
After Chastain spoke to the students, Colin Walsh of Coin Cafe presented
to the organization on behalf of the nation's vending industry a $10,000 check
saying, "Chicago SCORES is a great program because it helps get kids active,
which we think is critical to the health of our nation's youth. On behalf of
the Balanced for Life program we present this check to Chicago SCORES and look
forward to working with you on other programs that help protect the health of
our nation's youth."
In the US, over 65% of urban, city, school children do not participate in
extracurricular activities that involve any form of exercise and 32% are
overweight or obese. The Chicago SCORES after-school program engages children
from across the area in at least 90 minutes of soccer three times a week
ensuring that student-athletes learn to be physically active and involved in a
team activity at an early age. Balanced for Life Chicago SCORES Jamboree! is
the culminating event of the spring Chicago SCORES season where students get
to show the community how much their soccer and poetry skills have improved
over the season.
Every day, Chicago SCORES works with 300 children in six urban, public,
elementary schools. Using a unique combination of soccer, poetry and
community service projects, Chicago SCORES utilizes a whole child approach to
youth development for students who are at-risk of academic failure.
Concluded Walles, "On behalf of everyone associated with Chicago SCORES,
most especially the hundreds of school children who were the stars of the day,
we thank all of our program partners who made this event possible."
About Chicago SCORES
Chicago SCORES, an affiliate of America SCORES, is an innovative after-
school program that uses soccer, literacy and community service to build
healthy bodies, healthy minds and healthy communities among at-risk kids in
Chicago Public Schools. A dedicated team of public school teachers works with
8 - 12 year olds on basic skills including literacy and physical fitness, as
well as character development areas such as leadership and team work. The
result is happier, healthier and stronger kids and communities.
About Balanced for Life
Balanced for Life is a program created by the National Automatic
Merchandising Association's non-profit foundation designed to teach our
nation's youth the importance of a balanced diet and physical activity. For
more information visit http://www.balancedforlife.net