Plano, TX — Frito-Lay North America, the North American Regional Supporter of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, has contributed $600,000 to the “All-In with Frito-Lay” initiative with the U.S. Soccer Foundation. The program is the first step in Frito-Lay’s three-year commitment to increase equity in soccer by working with partners and organizations to enhance resources and training for young athletes.
“Frito-Lay has pledged $1 million to charitable organizations to even the playing field,” says Brett O’Brien, chief marketing officer of Frito-Lay North America. “While soccer only requires a ball and a patch of grass to play, many barriers often relegate thousands of players to the sidelines. The ‘All-In with Frito-Lay’ initiative will help break these barriers through incredible coaches, new equipment and resources that help keep young athletes in the game.”
As part of the initiative, more than 1,000 coaches will be trained by the U.S. Soccer Foundation via evidence-based methods that incorporate mentorship, teach coaches to create lasting, positive connections with youth, and guide coaches on how to strengthen the social and emotional skills of young people in underserved communities.
Frito-Lay’s support funds the development of and access to coaching and mentoring training resources, as well as equipment, including soccer balls, goals and pinnies. Further, the donation contributes to opportunities for coaches to attend soccer conferences and events throughout the year and spaces for training and workshops.
To launch the program, Frito-Lay and the U.S. Soccer Foundation held an interactive superstar-soccer event in California, where two-time FIFA Women’s World Cup champion and two-time Olympic gold medalist Brandi Chastain surprised more than 200 athletes by jumping into their practice. Freestyle soccer stars Frankie Flo, DJ Diveny, Hayley Gonzales and Caitlyn Schrepfer joined Chastain in running a series of drills that included trick shots, footwork and passing.
“It’s always a great feeling getting back out on the field, especially when it’s for a program that celebrates the relationship between coaches and athletes and is focused on keeping youth in the game,” says Chastain. “A great coach will make their mark on you as a player and as a person by strengthening your confidence and empowering you to be the best person you can be.”
Following the workshop, Chastain sat down with Tina Mahal, senior vice president of marketing, Frito-Lay North America, and the freestyle soccer stars to discuss the impact the game and their coaches have had on them throughout their careers and in their everyday lives. When asked about the most influential coach in her life, Chastain shared that her father was instrumental in shaping her soccer career and fostering her love of the game.
“The coach-player relationship is a special one. A great coach becomes a mentor whose impact stays with an athlete throughout their life,” says Ed Foster-Simeon, president and CEO of the U.S. Soccer Foundation. “Shaping this initiative with Frito-Lay gives us an opportunity to train even more coaches as mentors, which in turn brings more youth onto the soccer field. Even more, it gives youth access to coaches that will make a positive impact on their lives on and off the field by supporting their physical, social, and emotional well-being.”