With the help of the Truesdale Health Foundation’s ongoing sponsorship of the Fall River Youth Soccer Association, the Association’s TOPSoccer program has become robust. The program gives children with mental and physical disabilities the opportunity to engage in therapeutic sports activities.
The program serves children and young adults from ages 3 to 23 and includes those with autism, ADHD, visual impairments and other disabilities. Participants take to the field to play soccer with volunteers, and in the process learn skills, socialize and have fun. The program, now in its 7th year, has grown from 9 to 40 participants.
Deborah DeFalco-Furtado, a special-needs teacher and the program’s director, said, “The real value of this structured soccer activity is in the emotional and social development that takes place. For example, we have a young man who was previously non-verbal. After a few seasons in the program he now is talking, socially engaged, and excited about participating. These kinds of successes warm my heart.”
The Truesdale Health Foundation is the major sponsor of the FRYSA, which provides supervised soccer programs for the physical and social well-being of over 900 boys and girls in the Greater Fall River community. The Association promotes sportsmanship, fair play and honesty.
The Foundation’s support funds field maintenance, equipment purchases and TOPSoccer program operations, among other needs. Stuart Levine, D.D.S., Truesdale Health Foundation Board Member, said, “The Foundation’s focus on health and wellness aligns well with the FRYSA and its ability to instill positive values and get positive results that often last a lifetime.”
DeFalco-Furtado added, “The support from the Truesdale Health Foundation has opened the door to so much. Funding has enabled kids to have opportunities that contribute to success in their lives.”
About Truesdale Health Foundation
The Truesdale Health Foundation is the charitable arm of Truesdale Health, Inc. The Foundation supports programs designed to improve health outcomes such as community youth sports programs, and supports individuals pursuing education and training in preparation for health care related professions. The Foundation was established in 2014, and is an initiative of and led by the Truesdale Health Board of Directors. Learn more at truesdalehealth.com/foundation
Stuart Levine, D.D.S., Truesdale Health Foundation Board Member, and Deborah DeFalco-Furtado, Director of the Fall River Youth Soccer Association’s TOPSoccer program.
The “Big Soccer Ball” is just one way that the TOPSoccer program engages special-needs kids, helping them to develop emotionally and socially.