Stephen Schirra is the founder of Around the Worlds, a non-profit organization that provides free soccer workshops to children from underserved communities around the world. He was the first guest speaker of the 8th session of The Marshall Legacy Institutes's Peace Through Sport program. Stephen and his organization have hand-delivered more than 4,000 soccer balls and directly taught 7,872 kids to play soccer in 52 countries.
Stephen was a very inspiring speaker, as he brought great energy and excitement to the PTS participants from Lebanon and America. His message focused on several key points including:
Take action on your dreams or they will remain dreams.
Start with an idea and then identify the how, what, and why. The why is the most important thing. Once the why has been identified, never lose sight of it.
Collaborate with others and ask for help.
Be flexible and think creatively
Be open to learning.
Sports such as soccer can make a positive change and allow people of all ages to affect change to different populations around the world. Stephen talked about being brave, courageous, and open-minded in order to really make a positive impact in the world. We are so grateful for Stephen's time and energy during the call. All of the participants including teachers and students were very engaged in the call.
"Sport is a source to let the power of our kids out into the world."- Fouad, Lebanese PTS Session 8 participant
Peace Through Sport (PTS) is one of The Marshall Legacy Institute's educational programs and is generously funded by the U.S. Embassy in Beirut. PTS connects youth from Lebanon and the United States as they work through a curriculum focused on respect for diversity, communication, and problem-solving. Participants also learn about their communities identifying strengths, areas of need, and available resources before creating and implementing service-learning projects to benefit their local communities.