MARIETTA, Ga. - Some of the city's most passionate soccer fans came together at the home of the Atlanta United, the Children's Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground in Marietta.
Soccer players, families, coaches and sponsors participated in the seventh annual Atlanta Champions League tournament fundraising event. Soccer in the Streets, the nonprofit behind the event, works to empower youth in lower income neighborhoods through soccer and education. The tournament helped raise money to go toward that mission.
"A lot of these kids come from backgrounds where they don't have the opportunity to even to play sport," said Phil Hill, executive director of Soccer in the Streets. "So when they're given the infrastructure and the opportunity to do that, a lot of them really seize that opportunity."
Maxime Muzungu is one of those children. The 16-year-old came to the United States from Congo about one year ago after having to leave the country due to rough circumstances. Muzungu has aspirations to excel in school and one day earn a spot on the Atlanta United roster.
"When you play[soccer], you know sometimes, it just makes us happy," said Muzungu. "It's awesome. I don't know how I can say it but it's really good."
To learn more about Soccer in the Streets and upcoming events, visit soccerstreets.org.