The Ward three Buddy Ball soccer teams are in place and kicking their way to winning on the field. But coaches are looking for a few more good players. KPLC's Laila Morcos has more on the program that's giving special needs children and their parents a reason to cheer all the way to the goal line.
Picking players is the first order of the day for buddy ball soccer coaches. The new soccer season is underway for the special kickers.
And there's no shortage of talent on the field, even though some of the players may need a little help. "It's so fulfilling to see the looks on their faces and their parents faces," says Ward 3 Recreation Executive Director Kevin Mullen.
He says play on fields can spark lots of emotions for some parents like Angel Abercrombie. Her son has muscular dystrophy. "Just to see him so happy. It makes me so happy. My heart is just full."
With four teams and 40 players, there's sure to be a future Mia Hamm or Maradona in the midst. maybe it's seven year old Gavin. "Gavin did so well last week. I was so impressed with this running and playing and kicking the ball," says Connie Yates.
"You can see the enjoyment of what they can get out of being with other kids. They can compete," says Athletic Director Kip Texada. And he says if soccer isn't the game of choice .. The program is expanding to include flag football, basketball and more. "We're very grateful for all the numbers and we're creating even more."
A much needed program in the area, one the kids love. Even though the day's game is over, the kids don't want to stop playing! But eventually, team hand shakes end all the play, at least until next time.