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Tormenta FC Hosts Migrant Summer Program Soccer Clinic

June 6, 2019 - United Soccer League One (USL1) - South Georgia Tormenta FC News Release

Tormenta FC partnered with the Georgia Migrant Education Program (MEP) to host a soccer clinic for thirty-one migrant youths. Tormenta FC coaches, players and staff came out last night to serve the larger Georgia community and create memories for young migrants hailing from the United States, Mexico and Central America.

"I feel like I can identify with these kids," goalkeeper Pablo Jara explained. "Five years ago when I moved to America, I couldn't speak the language, and it was so difficult. Speaking to the kids in both English and Spanish last night touched me. Being able to say, 'Hey, five years ago I couldn't do this.'"

The clinic consisted of a four-team soccer tournament with points given for goals achieved, goal celebrations and best team photos. Each youth was given a Tormenta FC scarf at the end of the clinic as a lifelong keepsake. The migrant youths can now represent the club wherever they go, but they also took away life lessons with them.

"I think Ricardo Gomez is the best example for Tormenta to bring to these kids," Jara said. "He's the son of immigrant parents and now look where he is. He's a professional soccer player."

Tormenta's soccer clinic was a part of the Migrant Summer Program, hosted by the Georgia Department of Education on the Georgia Southern University campus. The week-long camp gives migrant youths the opportunity to stay in university dorms, eat in the dining halls and experience college life in general.

The Migrant Education Program aims to overcome educational and social issues related to frequent moves that these migrant youths undergo during their school career. The program gives Georgian migrants the resources they need to succeed in both school and in their communities.

"I was amazed by the engagement and level of energy that the coaches and players invested into the clinic," MEP Coordinator Margarita Munoz said. "A special thanks to coaches Ian Cameron and Jorge Gonzalez for taking the time to come and to Pablo Jara for his leadership on making this wonderful experience happen. I know the participants will treasure this experience all their lives."

This partnership is a small, but impactful piece of the club's plans to make soccer accessible to all. In May, Tormenta FC implemented a complete online Spanish presence, hoping to build bridges and create more opportunities for the club's Hispanic fan base. Tormenta FC Academy has also announced low-cost options for children in Statesboro's rural surroundings like free soccer clinics every Friday in Hardeeville, South Carolina. The club will continue initiatives like these while on its mission to encompass its diverse fan base and break down barriers.

For additional information and scheduling interviews, call (478-508-2604) or email: [email protected]

South Georgia Tormenta FC is a professional soccer franchise in Statesboro, Georgia that was founded in 2015. The club established itself as one of the premier USL League Two teams (formerly known as PDL) across the United States before joining USL League One as the founding member of the league. The club is constructing a new state-of-the-art 5,000-seat soccer-specific stadium in Statesboro. Planned to be built next to The Clubhouse on Old Register Road, the new venue will provide an exciting and authentic professional soccer experience for fans and players alike.

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