FC Cincinnati and FC Cincinnati Foundation Release 2019 Community Report & Unveil 2020 Initiatives
CINCINNATI - After a year in which they made a $1.5 million investment in the Greater Cincinnati community, FC Cincinnati and the FC Cincinnati Foundation have released the 2019 Community Report, highlighting programs and initiatives. The 2019 Community Report provides a detailed overview of the Foundation's inaugural year programming and fundraising, as well as FC Cincinnati's community relations initiatives.
Also on the heels of its first-year success, FC Cincinnati and the FC Cincinnati Foundation has also announced its slate of 2020 initiatives. The coming year will see expanded programming, both growing existing programs and launching new initiatives that complement the goals and vision of the club and its not-for-profit arm.
Some of the new programming launching in 2020 includes:
Special Olympics Unified Team. FC Cincinnati have partnered with the Special Olympics Hamilton County and MLS WORKS for the club's first full Unified Team. Local Special Olympics athletes and partner athletes will form a team that will face the Columbus Crew's Unified team annually. The FC Cincinnati Unified athletes will enjoy a special signing day and will wear FCC's uniform in their match against Columbus. Further, select FCC Unified athletes will represent the club at the Unified match at the 2020 MLS All-Star Game in July.
Actions Matter. In partnership with MLS WORKS, FC Cincinnati will support the league's anti-bullying program, Actions Matter, in Cincinnati Public Schools (CPS). The program's initial 2020 launch will include a curriculum for 250 students at seven CPS schools, as well as a celebration event at Taft IT High School, which neighbors the club's future West End Stadium. The program is expected to grow throughout the year.
Soccer Unites. The new Soccer Unites program combines the Foundation's former in-school (Soccer Ambassador Program) and after-school (currently Soccer for Success) curriculums into one contiguous program. The new initiative will now include additional programming to focus on character development. Additionally, the FC Cincinnati Foundation is planning to expand the age range the programming impacts, further growing the educational-athletic curriculum throughout the Greater Cincinnati region.
Existing FC Cincinnati Foundation and FC Cincinnati community programming that will expand in 2020 includes:
MLS WORKS Greener Goals. After launching FC Cincinnati's environmental awareness campaign in 2019, FCC will expand their reach in 2020. The club will perform two service projects in the West End, and will conduct a single-use plastic bag and plastic film collection in partnership with the Newport Aquarium and Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden. All plastic bags and plastic film collected - at FCC games, the Newport Aquarium and Cincinnati Zoo - will be repurposed into benches to be installed at Laurel Playground, near West End Stadium. The club will highlight the Greener Goals initiative during the month of April and collect bags at the April 5 match against Atlanta United FC and the April 26 match against the San Jose Earthquakes.
Soccer for All. The May 30 game against Nashville SC will serve as the club's Soccer for All match. The game will celebrate and raise awareness of diversity and inclusion in the sport, including the LGBTQ community. Among the other activities planned to help celebrate the concept that soccer is a game for everyone, are a Mini Pitch build next to an all-inclusive playground, introduction of the Special Olympics Unified Team and a celebration of the West End Pride program.
Mini Pitch Builds. In addition to the all-inclusive build in the spring, the FC Cincinnati Foundation will open its second Mini Pitch - and fourth of the 10 committed to in the area - in the fall. Mini Pitches are built in neighborhoods that usually do not have access to safe play spaces, and once opened, offer scheduled programming through Foundation and club partners, and a free play space for children and adults alike.
Finally, the popular and successful FC Cincinnati Foundation fundraisers will also return in 2020 include:
Served by the Pros. FC Cincinnati players will put their bartending and server skills to the test at the second-annual "Served by the Pros" event at Eddie Merlot's. This year's event will be held on Sunday, March 22, and will help kick off the 2020 season. In 2019, the event raised almost $40,000 for the FC Cincinnati Foundation. More information about the upcoming 2020 event, including ticket information, is available HERE.
FCC3. The FC Cincinnati Foundation and Flying Pig Marathon have teamed up again to present the FCC3, a 3-mile race and FCC away-game watch party, on Saturday, June 13, when FCC travel to face D.C. United. In 2019, more than 3,000 fans participated in the inaugural event and stuck around to watch FCC's road win at Chicago. Race information and registration is available at fccrace.com.
Ladies Lace Up. This women-only soccer 101 event brings the club's female fans together to learn more about the beautiful game. With dinner, drinks and shopping intermingled with soccer activities and a chalk talk led by FCC's coaches and technical staff, the FC Cincinnati Foundation will host the second-annual event on Thursday, Sept. 3 at the Mercy Health Training Center in Milford, Ohio.
The Baileys. The FC Cincinnati Foundation will roll out the orange carpet for The Baileys, the club's end-of-season awards ceremony that celebrates individual player accomplishments, as well as FC Cincinnati and the Foundation's work in the community. The 2020 Baileys will take place on Wednesday, Sept. 30.
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