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LAFC, Kaiser Permanente, adidas and U.S. Soccer Foundaton to Build Futsal Court for South Los Angeles Youth

October 18, 2018 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Los Angeles FC News Release

Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC), Kaiser Permanente, adidas and the U.S. Soccer Foundation have teamed up with the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) to build a futsal court for youth in South Los Angeles. The project kicks off with a court dedication ceremony on Thursday, Oct. 18 from 3 - 4:30 pm PT, where the organizations will reveal the futsal court rendering at Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Middle School, close to LAFC's Banc of California Stadium in the Heart of Los Angeles.

The collaboration highlights each organizations mission and commitment to expanding access to fitness opportunities for students in L.A.. "Street by Street, Block By Block, One by One,' LAFC is dedicated to providing access and opportunity to the world's game.

"We pledge to be a force for good in our community," said LAFC President and Co-Owner Tom Penn. "Our collaboration with Kaiser Permanente, adidas and the U.S. Soccer Foundation will create a lasting safe place to play for local youth in the Heart of Los Angeles."

Kaiser Permanente's roots run deep throughout Southern California with a long history of expanding access to communities, shaping health knowledge and improving environments. The collaboration with LAFC falls in line with its mission to improve the total health of its members as well as the communities it serves.

"At Kaiser Permanente, we believe it is our obligation as a health care provider, to improve the health of the communities we serve, and that means more than just an absence of illness. It is about creating an environment that supports the physical, emotional and spiritual well-being of those who live, work and play there," said Julie Miller-Phipps, regional president, Kaiser Permanente Southern California, Health Plan and Hospitals. "We are happy to partner with the Los Angeles Football Club and we support innovative efforts to promote wellness and physical activity among our youth."

Futsal is form of soccer played on a hard court and is much smaller than the normal playing field. It is a game between two teams of five players each and is played with a much smaller, and harder low-bounce ball.

"Sport is an essential component of any healthy community and we are proud to create another new mini-pitch with our partners in Los Angeles who are using soccer to bring about positive social change," said Ed Foster-Simeon, President & CEO of the U.S. Soccer Foundation. "The addition of this new space will allow more children and community members to have a safe place to play the game, pursue a healthy lifestyle, and develop skills that will help them on and off the pitch."

The dedication ceremony of the futsal court to Bethune Middle School happens to take place during National Health Education Week, Oct.15-19. Soccer and/or futsal can be a great, fun workout for children. It provides several health benefits that include increasing aerobic capacity and cardiovascular health, lowering body fat, and improving muscle tone.

This is the third futsal court that LAFC has been involved in building in Los Angeles. Along with adidas and the U.S. Soccer Foundation, the Club helped open a new mini-pitch at Menlo Avenue Elementary School in April and the Watts Empowerment Center in September.

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