• Naomi Graham

MARKED Football Club Support

"Rompiendo Ciclos, Empoderando Vidas: Honor, Carácter, Fuerza, Familia MARKED"

- Club de Futbol MARKED


"Breaking Cycles, Empowering Lives: Honor, Character,

Strength, MARKED Family"

- MARKED Soccer Club

Image: members of the Club de Futbol MARKED from their Instagram page "@clubdefutbolmarked"

MARKED - Guadalajara

"MARKED" is an NGO working in the outskirts of Guadalajara, Mexico. MARKED was founded in 2011 by a couple from Seattle, Washington who had a dream to use MARKED to "empower the fundamental needs and education of children" (marked.org/aboutus) as well as breaking generational cycles of impoverished communities in Latin America. One of the ways they are breaking cycles and empowering lives among the youth of their community is by running a soccer program. When asked why they thought a soccer program could transform lives, they replied:


"The most simple answer is because there was a need. There was a need for a healthy outlet for the men and boys in our community to come and play. There was a need to offer something that could connect us with those who played a major role among the families and culture of our community. There was a need to offer something that they loved, and could relate to, to build trust. There was a need to meet them where they were at. Soccer has been a key that opened the door to create a new strategy that is releasing a new culture among those we reach" (@hellomarked Instagram post).


They also shared the following:


"We have watched as our MARKED soccer team has transformed themselves from gangsters who once represented torment and fear back into young men who now represent pride bringing joy and unity to their drug stricken town.

...

Over the past 9 years, we at MARKED have seen with our own eyes those statistics begin to change for good among the communities in which we serve. From reduced crime rates to increased job opportunities for families allowing thousands of children to come out of the workforce and putting them back into school with over a 95% enrollment rate." (@hellomarked Instagram post).



***You can learn more about MARKED by checking out @hellomarked on Instagram***


Post by @hellomarked Instagram Page


Brotherhood


"Why is brotherhood such a big deal? ---


Not only is it ingrained in their culture, it is also taught and expected among the gangs. Thus when we first started working inside our communities we knew that creating a family for these guys was going to be key. For many, family looked dysfunctional at best, abusive at worst. And we knew that in order to reach hearts and gain trust we had to offer more than soccer. We needed to offer them family, a brotherhood, where they knew they belonged, had a voice, and were safe. Our brotherhood looks different than the gangs they came from, but day by day they are learning that loves conquers all, and this brotherhood is worth fighting for". ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Image: members of the Club de Futbol MARKED from their Instagram page "@clubdefutbolmarked"

IMG Give's Project #2 - MARKED Football Club Support

Community Gym Fundraiser


In order to continue growing their futbol club and supporting the young adults of their community, MARKED has recently started constructing a gym. This will help their soccer players train and improve their skills, as well as become more physically and mentally healthy. This gym is not only open to the soccer team, but to all community members. MARKED has shared that they have even seen mothers and their children coming in to exercise. IMG Give wants to support the development of this gym, and we can't imagine the incredible transformation that this project is going to bring to this community outside of Guadalajara.


Follow IMG Give on Instagram @IMG_Give to stay updated on this project, when it will start, what opportunities there are to get involved, and how everything will work. We will likely be having a meeting about this project soon.


Image: MARKED community gym being set up (@hellomarked)

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to DM us on Instagram or send us an email (img.give@gmail.com).