Vancouver Whitecaps FC congratulate the Vancouver Dream Catchers on their success at the Street Soccer Canada national championship in Calgary this past weekend.
Even though it was their first-ever appearance at the tournament, the Dream Catchers impressed many by their displays, with Vancouver playing Toronto in the championship final. After a 3-3 draw, the Dream Catchers won the title 2-0 on penalty kicks. Vancouver completed the tournament with a record of six wins and two defeats.
Dream Catchers founding director Rhonda Alvarez-Licona was thrilled by the team's performance in Calgary. "We’ve set the tone for Vancouver to host next year’s national tournament," she told the Dream Catchers' official website. "Spectators also called the Dream Catchers the classiest team at the tournament."
Founded in 2007, the Dream Catchers are made up of players aged 16 and over that have been homeless in the past two years. The team has more than 30 registrants, and 18 full-time players. The Dream Catchers are devoted to building self-esteem, improving health, and developing skills. They are also dedicated to social inclusion, which is one of the most powerful ways of addressing homelessness. Their goal is to raise awareness of sport as a powerful tool against homelessness, to support team members in all aspects of life, and to expand and grow as a community organization.
As part of their build-up to the nationals in Calgary, a celebrity team that included Whitecaps alumni and staff, as well as Vancouver media personalities, played a special charity match versus the Dream Catchers at the Empire Bowl – next to the PNE – on June 27.
The Street Soccer Canada national championship also acted as the national qualifier for the selection of players that will represent Canada at the Homeless World Cup in Melbourne, Australia, this December. "Team Canada coaches looked hard at our players and have already requested to bring a couple of them to Australia for Homeless World Cup!" said Alvarez-Licona.
The Whitecaps wish Canada's Homeless World Cup side the very best of luck on their appearance in Australia later this year.
CLICK HERE for more information on the Vancouver Dream Catchers, Street Soccer Canada, and the Homeless World Cup.
CLICK HERE to watch a video on the Homeless World Cup, narrated by actor Colin Farrell.