ABC’s Elementary Soccer Program Gets Boost From FC Cincinnati

With the COVID pandemic impacting the ability of elementary aged children to participate in organized athletics, ABC and Cincinnati Public Schools were determined to offer a soccer program after students returned in person during the second semester of the 2020-21 school year. While ABC and CPS were not able to offer this program to students during the previous school year, and numerous changes needed to be made to make the program COVID-compliant, elementary soccer at CPS made a triumphant return, thanks largely to the support of FC Cincinnati.

Beginning in April, students from 6 CPS elementary schools were taught the basics of soccer in a fun and interactive program. For six weeks, students were able to go outside afterschool and play soccer for an hour. When weather didn’t permit playing outside, students were able to play in their school’s gymnasiums. In addition to their normal practices and clinics, certain days featured the inclusion of instruction from a former-professional soccer player, Omar Cummings.

Currently the Community Coordinator at FC Cincinnati, Cummings is a former professional soccer player who has suited up for the likes of FC Cincinnati, Colorado Rapids, Houston Dynamo, and even the Jamaican National Team. Thanks to the involvement of FC Cincinnati, Omar was able to visit each of the six participating CPS schools, and use his expertise to  give inciteful, personalized instruction to the children.

Because running through the basics can be tedious, and students had just endured an entire day of school, Omar made sure to deliver the program in a manner that was fun and engaging for the students. “We want the children to stay motivated and keep a positive attitude,” said Cummings.

In addition to financial support and Omar’s appearance at practices, FC Cincinnati helped supply balls, pop-up goals, and various other equipment for the practices.   

Under normal circumstances, CPS students in the soccer program get to participate in instructional practices as well as games with students from other CPS elementary schools. In order to take precautions against the spread of COVID, these games between the schools were cancelled. In addition, the coaches and instructors wore masks at all times around the children.

FC Cincinnati Provides Continued Support

As ABC and CPS move this program into the future, we look forward to the continued partnership with FC Cincinnati.

“FC Cincinnati Foundation is proud to support ABC’s soccer programming,” said Kate Solomon, Vice President, Community Relations of FC Cincinnati and Executive Director of FC Cincinnati Foundation. “We believe in the power of sport, specifically soccer, to positively impact children’s lives through physical activity and character development. We look forward to introducing the game to more CPS students with ABC.”