New owners at Erie Sports Center provide scholarship fund to help young soccer players in Erie

Local News

Stepping on to the pitch. A new scholarship fund will help kids play at a premier level.

Young soccer players in Erie are getting the chance to play in a premier soccer league thanks to several scholarships provided by the new owners of the Erie Sports Center.

This program begins on November 20th with a mission to give back to the community and offer something for those athletes in tough financial situations.

Athletes ages five to 16 will be able to participate in the chance to practice soccer at the Erie Sports center where they might win a possible scholarship to be on the Commodores for a Year.

This program is centered for those in underserved communities.

“It’s our way of giving back to the community and it’s particularly focused on soccer. Right now we particularly focus on kids in need in the community right now,” said Troy Bingham, Co-Owner of Erie Sports Center.

Bingham said that there are three refugees currently in the program including 11-year-old Dinesh Dhadka.

“I’m excited. I want to play soccer that’s the best and I love soccer,” said Dinesh Dhadka, Participant.

There will be free soccer skills clinics on November 20th and 27th and on December 4th and 18th.

At the end of the four week session, six athletes will earn the scholarships worth more than $1,500 dollars to join the travel team.

“They will be trained three times a week by professional coaches given opportunities to travel all around the state by different teams,” said Bingham.

Bingham hopes this will be an experience that kids will never forget.

“If we can bring them up to see a world class facility, see what it means to be well coached in a professional environment, we hope that some kid goes wow that’s really what I want out of my life and if that’s a turning point for them and help support them then that’s great,” said Bingham.

Each athlete will receive a t-shirt, be trained by professionals, and will be trained on the new FIFA soccer field inside the sports dome.

The program does not stop after four weeks. If all goes well the owner said that he will place the athletes in outreach programs and keep tabs on their performance over the next year.

To register for the program, click here.

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