The 107IST mission is to support soccer in and around Portland, from the grassroots to the highest professional level.
One of my favorite things about volunteering to serve the 107 Independent Supporters Trust (107IST) is the work we get to do in the community supporting kids and soccer. Through membership dollars, donations, and proceeds from merchandise sales, 107IST gets to make a difference in the lives of others.
One example of this support is the work we were recently able to carry out at Alder Creek Middle School. Through the work of Gilmer Gongora, 107IST member and Northwest Family Services PreventNet Site Coordinator, we were able to support middle school soccer for a group of students at Alder Creek Middle School. Gilmer explains:
“Every Tuesday and Thursday at Alder Creek MS, a group of kids stay after school to play soccer. 80% of them have only played soccer with friends at lunch, or at pick-up games on the weekends. For these kids, soccer is a way of life; but the opportunity for them to play on a team is limited by finances, by transportation due to parents working, and by students’ lack of awareness of soccer opportunities. In the after school soccer program, 85% are low income Latino students, who have made the after school club their own.
“This is my second year running the program, and I wanted to make it bigger and better from the previous year. The first year, students wanted to play other teams. I wasn’t sure what the turnout would be so we only were able to scrimmage each other. This year, with help of three great organizations, it was possible to finally play other teams. I had enough numbers to create both a girls’ team and a boys’ team. With 80-85% of the players that signed up for my after school program having no previous experience playing organized soccer, it was an awesome opportunity to give kids a chance to be on a team for the first time. The 107IST, Building Blocks 4 Kids, and Tursi Soccer Supply sponsored and fitted the two teams for their indoor soccer season with brand new uniforms. I was given enough to buy indoor shoes for half of the players.
“With this opportunity, I asked students to try harder in school so they could earn the right to be on the team. I have seen players stay in during lunch with teachers to do homework or catch to up on assignments. One of the best things to experience is being part of a team, and I am glad that these kids were given a chance to be a part of one.”
This ability to purchase uniforms and equipment for both teams, as well as to secure scheduled time at indoor soccer playing other teams, was made possible thanks to membership dollars, merchandise sales, and donations in memory of Pondo Kosmas, a beloved 107IST member and owner of Mad Greek Deli. If you’re a member, if you donated, or if you purchased merchandise through No Pity Originals, thank you for making this possible. We are grateful for your support for team, town, and TA/Riveters; and for your support for soccer in and around Portland, from the grassroots to the highest professional level.