LOS ANGELES AND DETROIT (Thursday, Oct. 7, 2021) – For Soccer Ventures (FSV) today announced the Black Star Initiative (BSI), a new program developed to help accelerate the growth of soccer in Black American communities and to increase access and opportunity in the sport at the grassroots level, on and off the field. As part of the program’s launch BSI has partnered with Detroit City FC (DCFC) to host a weekend of community-based activity in Detroit from Oct. 29-31 at Keyworth Stadium and the Detroit City Fieldhouse.
“The goal of the Black Star Initiative is to facilitate every step of the soccer journey for aspiring Black soccer players, coaches, and professionals while building community through the celebration and amplification of the diverse Black soccer culture,” said Patrick Rose, Director, Black Star Initiative. “Our aim is to introduce more Black Americans to soccer and reduce barriers to youth participation and coaching while engaging the soccer community, Black youth and their parents.”
BSI recognizes the factors which have contributed to the underrepresentation of the Black community in American soccer. BSI has developed and designed programming aimed to address systemic racism in soccer, provide better access to soccer resources, facilitate educational and professional pathways, increase community awareness and credibility of the sport, and inspire kids to play who have not yet been introduced to the game.
“As a community richly rooted in Black history, we are excited that For Soccer Ventures is launching the Black Star Initiative in Detroit and with Detroit City FC,” said T.J. Winfrey, Chief of Partnerships, Detroit City FC. “This is a monumental moment for the city of Detroit and we look forward to a weekend of empowerment and soccer education for our community. Part of our mission at Detroit City FC is to grow soccer in our region and it begins right here in Detroit.”
Overview of Programming: BSIxDCFC at “The Market”
For registration and more information please visit www.blackstarsoccer.com
Black Star Initiative “Coaching Clinic” – Friday, October 29th
The Black Star Initiative kicks off its free national soccer coaching clinic program. US Soccer-licensed coaches provide Black soccer coaches, non-soccer coaches, and community leaders with coaching education and a chance to receive a “Grassroots” youth soccer license.
“The Market” 1st Annual Black Business Expo – Friday, October 29th
DCFC and the Metro Detroit Black Business Alliance (MDBBA) amplify local black businesses at the Detroit City Fieldhouse and provide Detroit residents with the ability to sample fresh food, art, music, fashion, and community culture. “The Market” is the first annual Black Business Expo for local, Black businesses across metro Detroit.
The Black Star Initiative “Youth Clinic” – Saturday, October 30th
A free, youth clinic introduces the beautiful game to boys and girls ages 5 – 14. This clinic will provide up to 150 participants with access to local DCFC stars, autograph sessions, and high-end free premiums. Participants at the youth clinic will have the opportunity to attend the DCFC Men’s professional team game on October 30th.
The Black Star Initiative “Elite Showcase” – Sunday, October 31st
A free, open tryout program that provides high school boys and girls with the opportunity to be scouted by professional teams and local college coaches.
About Black Star Initiative
Black Star Initiative is a new initiative developed by For Soccer Ventures to help accelerate the growth of soccer in the Black American community at the grassroots level, on and off the field. Recognizing the Black community's unique needs and the factors that have contributed to the underrepresentation of Black people in soccer, our initiative is designed to:
Improve access and opportunities in the game for the underserved
Address systemic racism in the sport
Facilitate educational and professional pathways
Increase awareness and credibility of soccer amongst the Black community
Celebrate and amplify the diverse Black soccer culture
ACCESS U Scholarships
ACCESS U Foundation (501c3) provides one-on-one mentorship to high school student-athletes interested in attending college who need support to navigate the process. BSI will award four student-athletes from Detroit with scholarships to participate in ACCESS U.
About For Soccer Ventures
For Soccer Ventures (FSV) is a soccer-specific media and experiences company, leading a collaborative movement to connect brands and platforms to the diverse American soccer community through immersive storytelling, properties, activations and strategic services. Uniquely positioned within the industry, the company's mission is to advance soccer in the United States, both on and off the field. FSV’s host of capabilities and properties are aimed at putting the fan and player first. FSV's current properties and investments include Major League Soccer's Philadelphia Union, Alianza de Futbol, Black Star Initiative, FootyCon, The Association, JUGOtv, YSC Academy, YSC Sports, APL Leagues and Tournaments, Best Soccer Show Podcast, Orange Slices Podcast, and the FSV Soccer Influencer Network.
About Detroit City FC
Founded in 2012, Detroit City FC has established itself as one of the most talked about soccer teams in North America. The club’s motto, “Passion for Our City, Passion for the Game,” evokes the three ideas the grassroots organization was built upon: to satisfy the demand for soccer in downtown Detroit, represent the city in a positive light, and build community through the beautiful game. Learn more at detcityfc.com.