Sunbelt Free Kicks Program Gives More Than $40,000 to Support Youth Soccer

More than 2,000 US Youth Soccer clubs earn money for equipment, scholarships and other club expenses

Oct 26, 2010, 10:30 ET from McKee Foods

COLLEGEDALE, Tenn., Oct. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- Last year, Sunbelt launched its Free Kicks cash reward program to help US Youth Soccer clubs raise money for soccer equipment, scholarships and other club expenses. Today, the company is pleased to announce that the program was a huge success, donating more than $40,000 to clubs and individuals across the country.

According to Sunbelt Brand Manager Jeff Badger, over the course of the program's 12-month run, Sunbelt awarded 12 soccer clubs from eight different states $1,000 each through its monthly drawing. One club from Texas and another from Wisconsin each won $2,500 through the program's semi-annual drawing. In addition, Sunbelt sent cash payments up to $100 to more than 2,000 soccer clubs that participated in Free Kicks throughout the U.S.

"It's great to see how far the Sunbelt Free Kicks loyalty program spread," said Badger. "Nutritious snacks and physical fitness are cornerstones of the Sunbelt brand, and seeing that reinforced through our sponsorship of US Youth Soccer is wonderful."

"What Sunbelt did through its Free Kicks program and continues to do through its sponsorship of US Youth Soccer is extremely important for the future of soccer, especially at the youth level," said Mark Casasanto, executive vice president of the South Philadelphia Soccer Club, whose club won $1,000. "Soccer is an expensive sport to play, and Sunbelt is helping us, and all the clubs affiliated with US Youth Soccer, keep the cost down for kids."

Before the program came to an end, participants earned cash for their soccer clubs by going online to and entering codes located on the box tops of Sunbelt granola bars and Sunbelt fruit and grain bars. In addition to the money clubs earned from entering the codes, they were also automatically entered into the $1,000 monthly drawings, with a chance to also win the program's final $2,500 drawing in August.

Scott Dane, executive director of the Capital Area Soccer League (another $1,000 Free Kicks winner), can also attest to the importance of the Free Kicks program. "We put our $1,000 donation into a financial aid fund," he said. "The need for financial assistance has grown tremendously in the Lansing area, and the money we received from Sunbelt gave approximately 15 players the opportunity to participate in our league at no cost."

"We started the Free Kicks program a year ago to give US Youth Soccer clubs a way to earn cash to support the continued growth of soccer across the country," said Badger. "It's gratifying to know the program helped so many children stay active and have fun. We wish all the clubs well—and the kids they serve."

About Sunbelt

McKee Foods, a family-owned and family-oriented company based in Collegedale, Tenn., introduced the Sunbelt brand in 1982. The Sunbelt brand includes 29 different varieties of cereal and snack products, including chewy granola bars, fudge dipped chewy granola bars, fruit and grain cereal bars, fruit snacks, cereals and more. To learn more about Sunbelt snacks and cereals, visit

SOURCE McKee Foods