|Creative Player Foundation gift to students: Megan Rapinoe|
|Soccer star participated with education initiative|
|Published Sunday, July 21, 2019 11:14 am|
|PHOTO | TROY HULL|
|U.S. Women's National Team star Megan Rapinoe led a soccer skills clinic with students from the Creative Player Foundation in Charlotte.|
Creative Player Foundation students got the thrill of a lifetime by stepping onto the pitch with Megan Rapinoe.
The International Champions Cup inaugural Legacy Project community partner in Charlotte uses soccer as a gateway to education for students in fourth through seventh grade. Ahead of Saturday’s match at Bank of America Stadium between Arsenal and Fiorentina, they shared the House of Soccer pitch with Rapinoe, the U.S. Women’s National Team World Cup winner, who led a skills clinic at the tournament’s festival component.
“We have this amazing opportunity, that we never thought was going to happen, right now, right here in Charlotte,” said Creative Player Foundation co-owner Daniel Araujo. “Our foundation kids…I believe that it’s going to change their lives. To have a mentor, a role model like her, on the field with them, teaching them not just the skills, but about life lessons—everybody is so happy.”
Aruajo participated in Friday’s All-Star match at the House of Soccer alongside former Major League Soccer and NFL players. A former professional himself, Aruajo had the loudest fan base on the sidelines—his students.
“For the kids, it’s having an opportunity, and they deserve it,” Araujo said. “After all the hard work this past school year, reading a lot, doing a lot of comprehension, having this for them, it will change their lives, because they will be next to somebody who can lead by example. They can look at her like, ‘I can do this. I can be somebody like this,” not just inside the field, but outside the field too.”
The Creative Player Foundation is located on Wilkinson Boulevard in West Charlotte, a marginalized part of the city struggling with economic inequality. Relevent Sports Group, the tournament organizer, announced the summer lineup there in addition to pledging the foundation with a new roof to replace the leaky one as well as sports equipment.
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