World sport

By on January 19, 2012

Photo: American troops hand out donated Kaneland soccer warmups and old uniforms among care packages in an Afghanistan village. Courtesy Photo

Knights soccer sends goodwill Afghanistan’s way
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—In Afghanistan, moments of kindness are always welcome in the face of hardship.

For inhabitants of the mountainous country, survival and basic necessities trump luxury.

This fall, basic necessities and warmth were provided to villagers by the United States Army—courtesy of the Kaneland High School soccer program.

“Scott Parillo and I discussed what to do with old Kaneland soccer uniforms that had accumulated, that we’d outgrown or just replaced due to upgrading to a different style,” Javier Martinez said.

Martinez, social science teacher and head adviser to the student council, wondered where the uniforms could end up.

“They took up a bunch of space at the end of summer, so we wondered what we could do with it or where to donate,” Martinez said.

Overtures were made toward Operation Support Our Troops, based in Lisle, Ill., and with a member of the outfit having a son serving with the United States Army in Afghanistan, the choice was made.

“We were able to donate the uniforms, and we thought the warmups and uniforms could create a little goodwill in that area with the local people,” Martinez said.

Donating Kaneland soccer garb like old uniforms and warmup kits provides no downside, according to Parillo.

“We decided to donate these items to help those less fortunate in Afghanistan,” Parillo said. “It is also to help our soldiers over there, as well. Our program will do anything to help our soldiers. We have donated soccer balls in the past and thought old uniforms would be a nice gesture. Our soldiers aren’t always the most popular people when they are there, and this can help to show that they mean well and are doing their jobs.”

“We were able to donate the uniforms, and we thought the warmups and uniforms could create a little goodwill in that area with the local people,” Martinez said.

Now locals in Afghanistan, with help from the United States’ best line of defense, can enjoy the best warmups Kaneland High School had to offer.

About Mike Slodki

Mike Slodki is a sports reporter for the Elburn Herald. You can reach him at MSlodki@elburnherald.com.

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