Soccer Recycle Donation Drive Alert – On March 9th and 10th DUSC will be collecting lightly used sports wear and equipment to donate to Haiti. Please consider donating if possible.
Downtown United Soccer Club is always looking for ways to give back to the greater soccer community. Over the last 12 months, our organization has worked with a man named Jean Laguerre to donate lightly used soccer equipment, clothing, and gear to Haiti. This is only a small piece of our Soccer Recycle program – a program that has supported the greater soccer community through clothing donations for the majority of the this decade.
Jean has lived in the United States for more than 15 years and is driven to make a positive impact in the world through soccer. The club came into contact with Jean while he was working for Pier 40 as a Facility Security Guard. During his security shifts, Jean would see the passion our coaches and players had during games and training sessions. As we built out our relationship with Jean, we learned more about his relationship with the global game. He would show us images from his home in Haiti and the communities he’s involved with when he visits. Jean also shared how he grew up playing football in Haiti without proper equipment or resources – things we can often take for granted today. In fact, he spent all of his childhood enjoying the game any way he could regardless of what was at his disposal. It was a regular occurrence for Jean to play with no shoes and no uniform, and no traditional ball. He even explained that owning a soccer ball was rare. With this perspective, Jean wishes to change the reality for communities in Haiti.
This is where the partnership between Jean and DUSC formed; at the crux of Haiti’s lack of accessible soccer equipment. Here’s how it works: we give Jean anything and everything soccer related from DUSC uniforms to lightly used cleats and soccer balls. He then uses his own resources to transfer the lightly used gear to Port au Prince, Haiti, where it is dispersed throughout the nation to various communities in need. Jean knows many of the village chiefs there and is able to respond to each village’s need.
Jean has future plans to hold a soccer camp in Haiti on his father’s land. He has learned that it only takes a little bit of hard work to make a huge change. We as an organization are thankful to be a part of his mission – we have a united goal. To show his thanks, Jean gifted us a beautifully handcrafted wooden ship with Haiti inscribed on its sides. Needless to say, it is one of our office’s most prized possessions.