Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the trip was canceled. We were unable to run the program in person and were very disappointed. But adversity breeds innovation. We needed to find a way to help them, even if it wouldn’t be as we originally planned.
We were to travel to Guatemala City this past March to implement a soccer program but due to the global pandemic, we needed to pivot our plans. Now we have an at-home soccer kit that will make an impact! Our names are Bennett Barr and Luke Kim, and we are high school juniors that share a passion for the game of soccer, while also believing in the power of helping others. We both have grown up playing soccer and are varsity starters on our high school team. Over these years we both have been blessed with great coaches and mentors that have taught us so much about the game of soccer and life in general. During this opportunity of traveling to Guatemala, we wanted to give back what we’ve learned and pass it on to a younger generation of athletes. When this trip was no longer on the table, we still wanted to make a difference in these children’s’ lives by creating this book and providing a donation of soccer balls to youth living in the communities surrounding Guatemala City’s garbage dump. These are particularly at-risk youth that live in impoverished communities.
Throughout this year we have been planning to visit Guatemala through connections we have made with the Hope’s In organization. We planned to first go on this trip during our spring break, and then that got pushed back to a summer trip which ultimately was canceled as well, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. During our time in Guatemala, we would have had the opportunity to build a house for a family living in a garbage dump area near Guatemala City. Alongside this main objective of our group, we wanted to create a soccer program for all the children in this area. We believed this would provide these children with an outlet from tough circumstances that so many of them are faced with. With our expertise and love for the game, we were very excited to share this opportunity with these younger children. When these trips were canceled we both still wanted to follow through on our plan to impact these children’s’ lives for the better. That’s when we decided to create this soccer-inspired children’s’ book that we would send to these kids along with their very own soccer ball. We have also decided to help provide staple foods to the families receiving the soccer at-home kits.
HOPE’S IN is working on raising enough funds to support families in various ways through the pandemic, we believe this effort compliments their relief efforts. Like in the United States, children in Guatemala have been home and unable to participate in in-person classes and extra-curricular activities like soccer.
Our goal is to raise $1,500 or more to give the children’s book, staple foods and soccer gear.
Thank you for supporting not only our project but HOPE’S IN’s efforts to empower families living in Guatemala City and help develop the next generation of humanitarian leaders. We are so thankful for your donation.
Luke Kim and Bennett Barr