Imagine if all it took to positively impact the lives of over 20,000 people was a simple click of a mouse? How fast would you jump on your computer to find out more and make a difference?
Seth Stammler and the New York Red Bulls hope sooner than later.
The Pepsi Refresh Challenge is a competition that encourages innovative ideas that benefit communities around the world. The MLS is participating in the contest with player representatives from each team pitching ways that they can use the 50,000 check to benefit lives. Stammler is the New York Red Bulls representative and the 28-year old wants to build on the immense progress that he has made in assisting thousands of people in Haiti.
Since his initial trip four years ago with then-teammates Jozy Altidore and Jerrod Laventure and Haitian music star Wyclef Jean, Stammler has been committed to bringing clean reliable sources of water and providing education to young children. His organization, The Sporting Chance Foundation, has been effectively raising money for scholarships and water wells for Haiti over the past three years. The 28-year old defensive midfielder believes that having a solid foundation in place is critical to gaining quick progress.
“We already have the education program in place so it’s not like we’re starting things from scratch,” Stammler told Goal.com exclusively.
One of the poorest nations in the World, the country is still greatly devastated by the 7.0 earthquake that killed over 230,000 people. Stammler admits that his foundation’s work has been impacted by the disaster as several workers and students have left the program due to having to relocate. There has also been damage to one of the water wells that Sporting Chance had built. If Stammler wins, he will split the prize money between his education and clean water programs.
This will enable him to offer more scholarships and build another water well in addition to making repairs to anything that was damaged.
“Our education program that currently has 65 scholarships in the accelerated program that costs about 15,000 a year. We can provide scholarships for 10 to 15 more students and provide more resources for the students," said Stammler.
"We could then use the extra money to build water well that could provide water for 8 to 10,000 Haitians. The goal is build one well and possibly two while making repairs to the damaged well.”
Fans can vote up to 25 times a day for their favorite innovative solution. Voting ends on September 20th, let the clicking begin.
Vote for Seth Stammler at http://www.mlssoccer.com/pepsirefresh/newyork#
Stammler’s organization is: http://www.sportingchancefoundation.org/
Alex Labidou, a Goal.com contributor, is based in New York City. Follow him on Twitter @sportslab.