The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and U.S. Soccer announced today that four former U.S. Women’s National Team players and coaches will travel to South America in March to engage women and girls as part of the Department’s Empowering Women and Girls Through Sports Initiative. This initiative, which mobilizes all of the U.S. Department of State’s international sports programming, aims to increase the number of women and girls worldwide who are involved in sports. Click here to learn more.
From March 15-21, former U.S. Women’s National Team player Amanda Cromwell and former U.S. Women’s National Team coach Lauren Gregg will travel to Argentina, where they will lead clinics and teambuilding activities for underserved girls in Buenos Aires, Jujuy, Salta, and Tilcara. They will also meet with local coaches who traveled to the United States in 2008 as Sports Visitors, a program of SportsUnited.
In addition, former U.S. Women’s National Team players Lorrie Fair and Siri Mullinix will travel to Caracas and Maracaibo, Venezuela from March 15-20. While in Venezuela, these sports diplomats will lead clinics for underserved youth as well as students studying English through U.S. Embassy-sponsored programs. They will also meet with youth who traveled to the United States in 2010 through the Sports Visitor program.
Sports diplomacy builds on Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s vision of “smart power diplomacy,” which embraces the use of a full range of diplomatic tools – in this case sports – to bring people together and foster greater understanding.
SportsUnited is the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ premier sports exchange program at the U.S. Department of State. Since 2003, SportsUnited has brought more than 900 athletes from 58 countries to the United States to participate in Sports Visitor programs. Since 2005, SportsUnited has sent more than 200 U.S. athletes to 50 countries to participate in Sport Envoy programs.
Media contact: Talley Sergent U.S. Department of State at SergentRT@state.gov.