Some of Austin’s brightest young leaders are wrapping up an unforgettable summer. 

Verde Leaders, a feature of program of 4ATX Foundation, is working year-round to create Austin’s next generation of leaders through soccer. This summer, the program allowed participants to stay active, make new friends and learn the skills they need to be successful on and off the pitch.

Highlights were sprinkled across the six-week program. One of those came in mid-July, when Verde Leaders got the chance to meet Austin FC and Club Tigres UANL players and coaches ahead of the international friendly that took place between the two sides on July 14. 

Just a few days later, it was a different kind of memorable experience for the Verde Leaders. Austin City Council Member Gregorio Casar visited Verde Leaders at their soccer practice, sharing lessons about how to be advocates and leaders in their own communities. 

Other community leaders also visited the young adults this summer, including representatives from Capital Metro and H-E-B.  

This summer’s community-based programs served middle school and high school students at two sites in Austin: Dobie Middle School and Wooldridge School Park Mini-Pitch.

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A total of 190 students from over 40 Central Texas schools participated in the Verde Leaders program, helping the 4ATX Foundation work towards their mission of equipping teens from low-income Austin neighborhoods with a community of support and the social, emotional, and practical tools needed to thrive in today’s world.  

“In this time of uncertainty, it’s vital for kids to have a community where they can have fun and feel safe and supported,” said Jordan Johnson, 4ATX Foundation’s Director of Youth Development, “especially in the summer when kids do not have as many opportunities to learn and engage with their peers.”

The high school program culminated in an end of season tournament where the winner received H-E-B gift cards and a VIP tour of Q2 Stadium.

With another successful Verde Leaders Summer Program in the books, more young leaders are now ready to work towards a better future for their communities in Austin.

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