Frisco, Texas (Oct. 23, 2014) – Jubilee Park & Community Center celebrated the dedication of a new state-of-the-art soccer field this afternoon. The new field is the result of collaboration between the Embassy of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the FC Dallas Foundation, and will benefit hundreds of children at Jubilee and the wider Dallas community on a year-round basis. The UAE Embassy donated the funds to construct the field, and FC Dallas will provide complimentary soccer clinics and coaching to support the Jubilee Park & Community Center’s growing soccer program.
The event was attended by diplomats, FC Dallas executives, and local elected officials, including: Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, His Excellency Yousef Al Otaiba, UAE Ambassador the United States, Dallas City Councilman Adam Medrano, Clark Hunt, Chairman and CEO of FC Dallas, Dan Hunt, FC Dallas President, Bill Addy, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Jubilee, and many FC Dallas players including defender Moises Hernandez, who grew up in a nearby neighborhood.
Hundreds of local children and community members attended the event and participated in a soccer skills clinic organized by FC Dallas players and staff.
At the dedication event, Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings applauded the growing community ties between the UAE and Texas, noting that the Jubilee Park & Community Center field is an excellent example of the close friendship between the country and city. “As Mayor, it is great to see one of our strong local leaders, FC Dallas, working with one of our key international partners to come together to give back to the Dallas community. This soccer field is just one of the many positive impacts of the growing friendship between Texas and the UAE, and I want to thank Ambassador Al Otaiba for this generous contribution to the community.”
“Playing soccer was an important part of my childhood – the sport provides a valuable chance to empower children and teach them about teamwork,” said Yousef Al Otaiba, UAE Ambassador to the United States. “Along with FC Dallas, the UAE Embassy is excited to play a small part in helping the Jubilee Park & Community Center enhance the important work they provide for children in this community every day.”
The Jubilee Park field is the first field that the UAE Embassy and FC Dallas have built together. Dallas is the sixth US city to receive the gift of a soccer field from the UAE Embassy. The Embassy has collaborated with local community partners across the US to provide deserving children access to quality programming by building new soccer fields in: Washington, DC, New York City, Chicago, East Los Angeles and Miami.
“We are honored to have Ambassador Al Otaiba and the UAE Embassy as partners in this special project and thank them for their contributions. Soccer plays an important role in our community and it is exciting to provide children in the area with a safe place to play and grow,” said Clark Hunt, chairman and CEO of FC Dallas. “This is the third community field that FC Dallas has built in North Texas, and we look forward to continuing our efforts to enhance the communities of our fans.
The FC Dallas Foundation, which is currently scouting locations for a fourth community field, has also built community fields at Maple Elementary and Mercy Street in West Dallas.
“Our students are excited for the new field and we’re all honored to have been chosen by the UAE Embassy and the FC Dallas Foundation to receive such a remarkable gift,” said Ben Leal, Executive Director for the Jubilee Park & Community Center.
About The United Arab Emirates
The UAE is a source of stability, tolerance, innovation, and growth in the Arabian Gulf and around the globe. The United States and the UAE are reliable allies, with historical and present-day shared security and economic interests. In fact, the UAE is the largest export market for US goods in the Middle East and more US naval vessels visit UAE ports than any other port outside the United States. The United States and the UAE also enjoy growing social and cultural ties, and many US institutions in education, healthcare and the arts have formed collaborative partnerships with UAE entities. For more information: www.uae-embassy.org.
About Jubilee Park & Community Center
Jubilee Park & Community Center is a leader in Dallas in neighborhood revitalization. The mission of Jubilee is to be a catalyst for community renewal and enrichment to the southeast Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood, with special emphasis on comprehensive, community revitalization and the education of children and adults. Founded in 1997 through collaboration between AmeriCorps, Habitat for Humanity, Greater Dallas Community of Churches and Saint Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church, Jubilee seeks to improve lives and strengthen community.