Under its Collective Bargaining Agreement with MLS, the MLS Players Union donates certain fine monies collected from players to charities. The Executive Board of the Union has selected five worthy charities to receive donations from the 2015 fine money: the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, GLSEN, the Starfinder Foundation, Urban Initiatives and the U.S. Soccer Foundation.
The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute’s Jimmy Fund raises funds for adult and pediatric cancer care and research to improve the chances of survival for cancer patients around the world. The Union’s donation to The Jimmy Fund is made in recognition of Philadelphia Union forward Charlie Davies’ battle with liposarcoma.
GLSEN, founded in 1990, is focused on ensuring that all students in all schools are valued and treated with respect, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. The Union’s donation to GLSEN is made in recognition of Los Angeles Galaxy defender Robbie Rogers’ efforts on behalf of the LGBT community.
The Starfinder Foundation uses soccer as the hook to motivate and challenge children across the Philadelphia area through after school and summer programs. Starfinder works with approximately 400 children, representing over 30 countries and speaking over 25 languages, to form a collaborative community of cultural exchange centered on the world’s universal game.
Urban Initiatives, founded in 2003, uses soccer to empower Chicago’s youth to become agents of community change through academic success, healthy living and leadership development. The organization now serves over 15,000 children in 50 Chicago public schools.
The U.S. Soccer Foundation, founded in 1994, serves as the major charitable arm of soccer in the United States and is the primary charitable partner of the MLS Players Union. The Foundation is a leader in sportsbased youth development and uses soccer as a vehicle for social change, especially in underserved communities. The Union’s contribution will be used to continue an ongoing partnership with the Foundation to create mini-pitches through the Foundation’s Safe Places to Play Program. To date, four mini-pitches have been refurbished around the country using contributions from the Union, with more to follow.
On behalf of all players in MLS, the MLS Players Union is proud to support five such worthy charities