About The SWAG
The SWAG is a philanthropically funded, no cost soccer training program focused on opportunities for young athletes ages 4 through 8 from Philadelphia’s African-American and immigrant communities.
Launched in 2018, The SWAG player pool is comprised of over 2000 young athletes, who are offered soccer coaching and training year-round. Over 95% of the SWAG players are of African descent or from immigrant families.
The SWAG has been endorsed by the nationally-esteemed Philadelphia Union Academy program in Major League Soccer, which starts at U9 and runs through U17.
The SWAG’s focus is on providing Philadelphia’s young athletes with accelerated technical development and professional coaching in a fun setting.
The SWAG’s coaching pool is comprised of former professional and collegiate soccer players who work with the top youth soccer programs in the region, including the Philadelphia Union Junior Academy and other leading programs. In addition to professional level coaching, The SWAG coaches serve as mentors, counseling players and their families as they as they evaluate future athletic and educational opportunities.
Get to Know The SWAG Staff Below
SWAG Select Player Pool
The SWAG Select is an invite-only program and training slots are awarded on a rolling basis through The SWAG’s scouting efforts.
The SWAG’s coaches run player clinics year-round and invite roughly 100 players into the SWAG Select pool for additional training at multiple satellite locations in the Philadelphia area, also 100% free for players.
Numerous SWAG Select players have gone on to be selected for the Philadelphia Union’s Junior Academy program.
The SWAG Select are the reigning 2-time 3v3 National Champions in the 2014 birth year, winning the title in both 2021 and 2022 without a single loss.
The dedication of those who support The SWAG is unsurpassed, as evidenced by their personal and financial commitment: all administrative costs of The SWAG are underwritten, so that 100% of your SWAG donation is used to implement on-the-ground soccer programming for the thousands of young athletes involved with The SWAG.
The SWAG Impact is an innovative educational program for offered to SWAG Select players annually, primarily 1st and 2nd grade students.
SWAG Impact is designed to enhance literacy, communication skills and early fundamentals in writing composition, history, and geography through the study of past and current famous professional soccer players of African descent from around the world, such as Pele, Ronaldinho, Drogba, and Mbappe, among many others.
SWAG Impact includes interactive work with iPads provided by The SWAG, using software platforms such as Slack and Zoom, incorporating written and narrated video submissions by the students working with one another and the SWAG staff.
Students not only study the history of famous players of African descent, but also learn what made the players stand out as professionals, whether that be style of play or results on the world stage. As part of the SWAG Impact curriculum, students select video clips of the professionals and explain to the other students and the SWAG staff what made those professionals and their teams distinctive on the field. Click here to watch a video about The SWAG Impact program.
SWAG Private School
The SWAG is launching a private school scholarship program for top prospects from The SWAG Select pool. Four to six SWAG Select players and alumni players will be selected annually for the program which will involve private school education at a top school in the Philadelphia area, combined with morning training in soccer at the school with SWAG coaches and Philadelphia Union Academy coaches. After school, the players will be taken to their training.
The SWAG is supported philanthropically by the Charity for The Arts, Sports & Education (CHASE), a nonprofit corporation and 501(c)(3) public charity founded in 2021. Additional support both both through CHASE and directly is provided by the Silverback Educational Foundation For The Arts, Dance & Athletics. Both organizations are dedicated to supporting the arts, dance and athletics, providing opportunities both for underprivileged youth and individuals seeking to perform or compete at the collegiate, world class or professional level.
The Silverback Foundation is a private foundation exempt from tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code (EIN: 46-4902114). When you make a donation to support The SWAG, 100% of donation proceeds are used to support SWAG programming, which is of no cost for the children and families who participate. Donate here.
The SWAG would like to extend sincere thanks, and express our gratitude to all of those who make our one-of-a-kind programming possible through their contributions and support.
The Silverback Foundation
Charity for The Arts, Sports & Education
The Graham Foundation Trust
The LL Charitable Foundation
The Jay and Kelly Sugarman Foundation
The Walt Smith Family Philanthropy
The Families of the Philadelphia Union Academy