The National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS), the largest known youth-serving organization in America with more than 60 million boys and girls players registered in organized youth sports programs, has named US Club Soccer one of its five national finalists for the STRIVE Award for Organization of the Year.
The prestigious honor recognizes organizations implementing promising practices and policies to protect youth athletes. It recognizes the efforts of organizations across the country in their commitments to health, wellness and safety. The STRIVE Award for Organization of the Year demonstrates that it is possible for Sports to Teach Respect, Initiative, Values and Excellence without compromising safety. The award is presented by NCYS and AIG.
“US Club Soccer is honored to be a finalist for the STRIVE Award for Organization of the Year,” said Kevin Payne, US Club Soccer CEO. “By implementing various Player Health & Safety initiatives across US Club Soccer programming and by being so public with our commitment to young athletes’ wellness, we’re able to keep safety at the forefront of conversation in youth sports."
US Club Soccer has been vocal about leading in Player Health & Safety, becoming the first national soccer organization to implement important safety measures, such as enhanced background screening, an injury recognition course and SafeSport training. In July 2016, when US Club Soccer implemented best-in-class background screening and the online injury recognition course for all registered coaches and staff, Payne declared: "Player Health & Safety is our most important responsibility. To act otherwise would be irresponsible." Two years later, US Club Soccer upped the ante by mandating completion of online SafeSport training. These policies are aimed at its membership of about 70,000 coaches and staff, but they have far-reaching effects to US Club Soccer's cumulative youth athlete membership of about 500,000 players.
Players First, US Club Soccer’s flagship initiative improving the youth soccer experience for parents and players through holistic club development, was founded on five pillars – the cornerstone of those five being the Player Health & Safety pillar.
The winner of the STRIVE Award for Organization of the Year will be determined by public voting and NCYS judges. You can vote once per day and multiple times by the voting deadline of Dec. 12. The winning organization receives a $5,000 donation from NYCS and AIG.
Please consider voting for US Club Soccer among the group of STRIVE Award finalists. As a member of US Club Soccer, we all win together. This helps us further our Player Health & Safety efforts, and it keeps the conversation where it should be in youth sports: on player health, wellness and safety.
A National Association member of the U.S. Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer fosters the growth and development of soccer clubs in order to create the best possible environment for players of all ages.
Anchored by Players First and its five pillars of Club Development, Coaching Development, Player Development, Parent Engagement & Education and Player Health & Safety, US Club Soccer offers registration, league- and cup-based competition platforms, player identification and a variety of other programming, resources and services.
US Club Soccer is sponsored by Nike and supported by LaLiga through a technical partnership.