The Twin City Soccer TOPSoccer program is such a wonderful, heartwarming example of how an athletic program gives back to their community while serving children with disabilities. Every Spring and Fall, my son participates in this program for about 1 hour a week for eight weeks. He engages with young athletes (my son calls them, lovingly, ‘the teenagers’) and volunteers on the soccer field to participate in fun activities. It means so much to him to have undivided attention of one or two teenagers who genuinely want to interact and play, whether it is running a race, playing ‘Duck, Duck Goose’, or actually kicking a soccer ball and making a goal. Most of the time he enjoys telling stories and just bonding with the teenagers. I can’t say enough about how well the program is run and the quality (and large number) of volunteers are phenomenal. I know the Twins soccer program encourages character development in the players as I see the results weekly.
What is different about this program is, everyone wins! My son gets to play in his own way with lots of encouragement, doing activities that meet his ability, and with caring young individuals. The youth soccer volunteers win by sharing their time and talents which fosters valuable lessons of compassion, care, and contribution to our community. The parents and caregivers win when we watch the tremendous care from the Twins Soccer program for our children who would otherwise not be about to experience playing soccer on a team. All of our lives our touched in many rewarding ways.
My son asks me all week long when he will see Mackenzie, Skylar or one of the ‘fast teenagers’. When they greet him with hugs and smiles on Sunday afternoon, suddenly all of his challenges become invisible, and he is just a regular kid playing soccer. Thank you TOPSoccer for ALL of your efforts in making a difference in so many lives, especially my son, Kyler Zane Bryson.
Dana Lu Bryson