The 2nd Annual Midwest Street Soccer Invitational, featuring the St. Louis Roadies, will be held from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, April 9, at SLU's Baumann-Eberhardt Center (West Pine Gym), 3672 West Pine Mall. Parking is available in the University's garage at Grand and Laclede.
The event is open to the public and a $5 donation is suggested. All proceeds benefit the St. Louis Roadies street soccer team.
The event is hosted by the University's Center for Service and Community Engagement and the Alpha Phi Omega (APO) service fraternity along with Peter and Paul Community Services. APO is also creating a team of SLU students to compete in the tournament.
The Midwest Street Soccer Invitational is geared towards raising awareness about homelessness through the game of soccer. Players are either formerly or currently homeless and are vying for the opportunity to make the national Street Soccer USA tournament in Washington, D.C., in June.
In tournament and league competition, four-on-four-teams play 14-minute games on an enclosed surface about the size of a tennis court. Games are exciting, fast paced, often high scoring and, most of all, fun.
The experience of being part of a team and the renewed sense of self esteem that comes from belonging to something larger than oneself empowers participants to change their lives for the better. Street Soccer USA organizers estimate one third of those who play the sport leave homelessness behind for good.
Roadie players have moved into their own apartments, found jobs, attended financial planning classes, received mental health counseling and resolved legal matters. One player recently graduated from college and is now taking culinary classes.
Formed four years ago at Peter and Paul Community Services, the St. Louis Roadies competed in the annual Street Soccer USA Cup in Washington, D.C. that year.
For more information, contact Eric Anderson, director of campus recreation, at email@example.com or (314) 977-3972, or visit the St. Louis Roadies website.