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YFI Senators Soccer Squad Now Accepting Players for Summer 2017 Program in London, England

The 2016 YFI Senators Squad

There’s not another international program like this at all where you get trained like footballers, but then you give back to the local community.

Youth Futures International (YFI) premiered its unique Leadership Through Sportsmanship program in 2016 and had great success and feedback from its first squad of “YFI Senators” who traveled to London to learn important lessons in soccer and leadership, both on and off the field. Because of that success in 2016 and because interest continues to resonate with youth soccer players, YFI will again host its Leadership Through Sportsmanship program July 29-August 14, 2017 in London for high school boys and girls varsity soccer players.

The Leadership Through Sportsmanship program was founded as a response to a growing negative spotlight in sports as demonstrated by stories of athletes behaving badly on and off the field, coaches who mistreat athletes, and those who support athletes by demanding too much of them.

Soccer was a natural fit to launch YFI’s first sports program due to having established relationships with two professional soccer teams in London: Queens Park Rangers and Millwall Football Club. Both teams participate by providing professional coaching to YFI’s athletes at their facilities, classes in nutrition, health maintenance, introduction to sports-related careers, etc.

It is the value of leadership, however, that makes this soccer program stand uniquely apart from others. Leadership is taught not only in how the game is played, but in the spirit of providing leadership to the community off the field, whether coaching young at-risk children, playing soccer with youth in recovery and rehabilitation, and working with those with developmental disabilities. Squad members also leave the program with an accredited FA (Football Association) Level One Certificate for coaching football (soccer). “There’s not another international program like this at all where you get trained like footballers, but then you give back to the local community,” said Danny Edwards, College Football Academy Director for Queens Park Rangers.

In addition to being varsity level high school soccer players, YFI requires all athletes who apply to have a GPA of 3.0 or higher (or equivalent) and obtain a recommendation by their high school coach. YFI also limits the number of each soccer position accepted into the program as it puts together its 2017 squad of a maximum of 60 boys and girls soccer players.

“When I signed up for the trip I was a senior in high school looking forward to that transition to the first year of college I’m in now. I definitely felt like YFI got me in soccer shape and got me soccer ready with…

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