Elissa, lead volunteer, green division- "I had 2 kids who were kicking the ball back and forth to eachother, and I walked over and the girl said, "coach Elissa, I just learned how to stop the ball! At first I was trying to stop it like this, then [insert teammate's name] told me to stop it like this. Now it hasn't gone past me once." Then, the girl thanked her teammate. It was really sweet."
Payson, team coach, orange division- "We had a story from the first night, but it's a carry over from the first session. At the end of the first session, everyone was handed out ice cream and certificates at the end, but one of the members of my team didn't get either, and he was very upset. We got him a certificate, but the ice cream was all gone, so he was still very upset. So, on Monday I expected not to see this boy, and for him maybe to be upset with me, but when he saw me he ran up to me and gave me hug. So, soccer nights has turned out to be more powerful than I expected."
Sijo, coach, red division- "I'm from the red division, so we have the little ones. We have been trying for three days with just drills, drills, drills, but we've been struggling to keep their attention. So, today we played duck duck goose. They were really engaged, and they had fun. That's the goal of Soccer Nights."
Juan, division leader, blue division - "Something I saw that I really liked today was that we had one of our coaches missing, and the 2 assistant coaches were a little worried. Luckily, we had a new coach step in. but I liked that the assistant coaches stepped up their game and were more assertive. They connected with the kids, and everything flowed so much more smoothly even with the new coach. the assistant coaches attributed it to the new coach, but I think it was a team effort. Frankly, everything went better for the kids. They had better scrimmages and more fun. The assistant coaches were Lina and Kristian."
Nia, lead volunteer, volunteer coordinator- "Today after checking in all of the volunteers, I helped out with the 3-5 year olds. There was one girl who didn't seem to have anyone to play with after coming from the restroom, so I asked her what she wanted to play. She said, "Froggy froggy." I asked her how to play, and she explained that you just hop around like a frog and then tap another person so you can be friends and hop together. Although this didn't make much sense to me, I hopped around with her. Hopefully, she can find more kids to play froggy froggy with her tomorrow."
Grant, lead volunteer, registration- "My story tonight is a really good thing for registration. There's usually a little down time between groups of kids, so it's really fun for the volunteers to get to know each other in the down time. There have been some really great relationships and friendships formed. So, one example tonight was Connie and Arlene. Connie was born in China, so she's fluent in Chinese, and Arlene has always been interested in the Chinese language. So, Connie began to teach Arlene the language, and by the end of the night, Arlene was starting to write the Chinese characters. It's good to embrace all of the cultures that are present here at Soccer Nights."
Louise, volunteer, Parent Pal- "There was a woman I was talking to yesterday. I asked her what makes her feel at home. She said soccer because she grew up in Indonesia where, whenever she met up with her friends, they would play soccer. So she was really happy that her son could play soccer here."
Susanna, lead volunteer, Parent Pal- "There are a bunch of wonderful parents who sit on the bleachers, and they have tea parties every night. Most of them are from Ethiopia. So, I got to join one of their tea parties last night. They mixed me a little glass of tea with bread, and today we were tasked with finding people to cut up the watermelon because that takes a lot of people. We always try to get parents to help, and we try to sweeten the deal to get them to volunteer, for example, by letting them have some of the watermelon they cut. And one of the women said "No no, this is for the children. We will cut the watermelon." And because of Michaiah's wonderful, friendly spirit, we have organized a mother's game because a lot of the mothers don't play during the parent's game because they have to watch the little ones. So, we're going to have a smaller scale game so that people can take turns playing and subbing out and then watching the kids. They're all really psyched about it, so hopefully we can pull it off."
Brian, lead volunteer, logistics- "Most of our set up crew was missing today, but we had some kids come early, so they helped. They were cute, and also really fast. We got done on time with set up."
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