Head of the Heritage and Social Affairs Department Dana al-Marashi (C)
New Jersey - Arab Today
Officials from the UAE Embassy, representatives from the Affordable Housing Alliance, AHA, and the Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund, HSNJRF, yesterday joined local community leaders and children to celebrate the dedication of a new state-of-the-art soccer field at the Bradley Elementary School in Asbury Park, New Jersey.
The new soccer field is the result of a partnership between the AHA and the UAE Embassy, who donated the funds to construct the field. Bradley Elementary School's field will benefit hundreds of students on a daily basis, as well as children throughout the community.
"We are delighted to be a part of this exciting gift to the kids of Bradley Elementary and the Asbury Park community," said Dana Al Marashi, Head of the Heritage and Social Affairs Department at the UAE Embassy. "Working with great local partners, the UAE Embassy has been committed to providing support and deepening involvement to help communities rebuild in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. We are proud of this second community soccer field in the state following the dedication of a field in Atlantic City last fall. We hope the kids of Asbury Park have fun using this field for many years to come."
Bradley Elementary School is the second location in New Jersey to receive a soccer field built by the UAE Embassy. The development and construction of these community soccer fields is part of the UAE Embassy's commitment to helping restore storm-impacted communities across the state.
"The Alliance is pleased to be the conduit to such community development activities that help our younger community members.
It was a pleasure to work with each of our partners in this effort to bring quality recreational opportunities to local youth," said Donna Blaze, Chief Executive Officer for the Affordable Housing Alliance.
Dr. Lamont Repollet, Superintendent for Asbury Park Public Schools, said, "The District of Asbury Park is excited to receive this gift from the UAE Embassy and the Affordable Housing Alliance. The soccer field will provide a safe environment for the students to build upon the administration's principles of self-confidence, service, and leadership - and there is no better avenue to express all three than sports. This is the first step of what Asbury Park hopes will be a lasting partnership."
Asbury Park is the eighth US city to receive the gift of a soccer field from the UAE Embassy. Since 2010, the UAE Embassy has collaborated with local community partners across the US to provide deserving children access to quality soccer facilities and programs. The Embassy has helped build fields in New York City, East Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, Washington, DC, Dallas, and Atlantic City.