RUSSELL WALTERS AYSO 300 VIP PROGRAM
2017 Spring Season Information
Since 2003 the VIP Program has offered recreational soccer for special needs kids of all ages who are unable to participate in regular AYSO. Learn more about how Lyons Township High School soccer players and AYSO 300 VIP work together to provide a positive experience for both the VIP players and the LTHS “buddies”.
This past year, we had 25 players enrolled in this program with ages that ranged from 4 to 13 years of age. The players are grouped according to age and ability. Each group will hold a combination of practices and games.
All players will receive uniforms and participation trophies. Players outside of Region 300 are invited to join. All games are on Saturdays from 3:30pm – 4:30pm at Waiola Park in La Grange. Here is the Spring 2017 VIP schedule:
Location: Waiola Park, located along 47th Street at Stone Avenue, just east of Brainard Avenue in La Grange.
Registration: Registration for VIP is always open. If you know of any child interested in playing from 4 years old on up, please have their parents contact me at this email.
You can register your child here.
All players must have shin guards and should bring their own ball. Make sure the ball has your name on it.
We will need volunteers for the five Saturdays to bring water and post-game snacks/drinks. Please let me know which dates you’d like to volunteer.
If there is a problem with uniforms, let me know and we can get a replacement.
The AYSO 300 VIP Program…
provides a quality soccer experience for children – and adults – whose physical or mental disabilities make it difficult to successfully participate on mainstream teams. VIP teams may include those who are:
blind or visually impaired
amputees or conditions that impair mobility
mentally or emotionally challenged
These kids are Very Important Players (VIP) in AYSO. We recognize that all children need to feel a sense of belonging and acceptance. The VIP program offers that acceptance and carries our philosophy of Everyone Plays® to new heights – giving everyone a chance to play.
Kids with special needs are estimated to make up approximately 10% of the school-age population. Special schools and classrooms can isolate these children so the VIP Program has been structured to integrate our special kids into the rest of AYSO by using “buddies” from non-VIP teams to help these players both on – and off – the field.
Our goals for every participating player are:
have fun playing soccer
understand the fundamentals of the game
learn teamwork and fair play
increase positive self-esteem
become more physically fit
meet and be comfortable with new people
VIP helps more than just the players. Buddies and other volunteers increase their appreciation and understanding of individuals with special needs. They find their lives greatly enriched by their involvement with their new VIP friends.
For parents thinking they would never see their children playing a sport or making new friends, VIP gives them joy and hope. They are able to relax and enjoy watching their children having fun like other kids, perhaps for the first time.
Teams can have as few as five players, may be co-ed, and as with all AYSO teams, VIP teams are balanced with players rated by size and physical ability. Older and younger players form their own divisions, too, when numbers allow.