Project Unify Soccer Day Brings Students Together

Project Unify completely lived up to their motto, “Choose to include,” at Friday’s soccer game. They did so by bringing together the Unify participants to play alongside their fellow classmates and high school student volunteers. Parents and members of the community came out to cheer them on.

Hanna Schutzman, a high school senior who has been volunteering with Unify for three years said, “Seeing everyone play together and seeing the athletes’ faces when someone kicks them the ball or includes them” is her favorite part . She also said, “Seeing the inclusion spreading throughout the school,” were most important to her.

My favorite part of Unified Soccer Day was the encouragement and enthusiasm of the students.  Hopefully students left with a better understanding of the importance of inclusion,” Sarah Call, Project Unify’s advisor said.

The three 10 minute soccer games took place at the Sweitzer Gym. After a group warm-up, teams were formed and games began.  Craig Wasia, one of the Unify youth delegates, said he had a blast, “My favorite part was being the goalie.” Kinley Bollinger joined Project Unify because, she believes inclusion throughout our school will make it a more positive place.

“The benefit of being part of a club like Project Unify and getting involved in Unified Sports is that it increases social interaction between athletes with and without intellectual disabilities. Everyone learns from each other, realizing that we all play sports for the same reasons and we all benefit in the same ways,” Call said.  

“We need to celebrate our differences, and it’s important to love everyone,” said Sage Crofts.