Soccer Legend Brandi Chastain Joins 300 Chicago Elementary Students for Balanced for Life Chicago SCORES Soccer Jamboree!
Elementary Students From Six Schools Play Back-to-Back Soccer Matches
in the Morning, Perform Poetry Readings in the Afternoon in
Celebration Sponsored by the Nation's Vending Industry
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 enjoying today." 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
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