'Level the Playing Field' offers help to players who can't afford high cost of club soccer

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- "Level the Playing Field"

Fancy footwork can make a child a star on the soccer field but for parents, it can be very expensive.

Coach Amine Tais has seen soccer players walk off the field for good because they couldn't keep up with the cost of playing club soccer.

He's trying to change that with "Level the Playing Field".

"What we are trying to do is raise money to help some of these kids, get some scholarships and be able to participate in competitive soccer because that opens a lot of doors for them," said Tais.

The new organization is offering help to parents and children who need financial assistance to keep up with the high cost of playing club soccer.

Tais says families spend thousands of dollars each year when you add up club and tournament fees with travel expenses and lessons.

He saw a number of players drop out when his son started playing club soccer a few years ago.

"We see kids that have a lot of talent that want to join but just can't afford it. They have to find somebody to help them and there is a better to do this if it is organized," he said.

"Level the Playing Field" is hosting an event this Saturday at the Woodward Park Library to inform parents not only on financial assistance but also on how their child can become a better player.

One coach holding a practice Wednesday morning agrees players shouldn't have to forfeit playing just because they don't have the money.

"It is unfortunate that the United State kind of has this play to pay method. It is not like that anywhere else in the world. If people are trying to make a change they are definitely going to have to have more community resources," said McKay Kozielski, Soccer Coach.

Those community resources include playing fields giving soccer players access before, during and after school.

"Level the Playing Field" event takes place this Saturday, August 17th at the Woodward Park Library in Northeast Fresno at 10 a.m. The event is free for everyone.
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