Luckson Laurent established Tommy Foutbal Club (TFC) in 2004. There are 25 members, all of whom hail from La Ferme Blanchard, Haiti. They range in age from 15 to 26. Since the devastating earthquake in January 2010 the already sparse education and employment opportunities have virtually disappeared. These players lost livelihoods, homes and family members. Lack of opportunities now stagnates their skills in masonry, agronomy, etc.
TFC annually competes in the “Championat Anti Stress Leagues” amidst the fields Southeast of Croix-des-Bouquets. TFC is a marginalized group that always has a chance at the championship. In 2010 and 2011 TFC fell in the semis after an admirable run. At that time they wore borrowed kits sometimes taken without warning. Many of these players train without shoes and borrow ill-fitting boots for matches. Our founder, Kris, was honored to play with TFC in the 2010 season.
TFC continually works with us on numerous community projects, including an integrated agricultural demo site, Croix-des-Bouquets first formal youth soccer league (concluded November 2013), survey and information gathering, etc. They do much of this work in return for desired soccer equipment. PROViDE pays them with meals, cones, coaching manuals, steel goal frames (Summer 2010), and season registration fees. With donation from Daniel Spillman we also gave them OneWorld balls. For work in 2011 each player received a full uniform donated by Total Shirt Imaging. Individuals also log their hours in order to earn new, high quality soccer boots.
Upon Kris’s arrival with our agriculture intern, Corinne McAndrews, in March 2012 we held a ceremony to honor the team for work they completed the past summer and to supply each player, coach, and the “Tommy FC mamas” (team managers) with brand new Nike Clima-dri polos (donated by Bountiful Rush and the Wardel Family), complete with Tommy FC embroidery patches done by Total Shirt Imaging (TSI) in Ogden, UT.
Charles also printed Tommy FC’s logo on hundreds of white t-shirts. The team will sell these shirts to supporters—local and international—to raise funds for equipment and registration fees. You can order your TOMMY FC POLO today in Black or White.
TFC formed a committee to set up a soccer clinic and Croix-des-Bouquets’ first formal Youth Soccer League ran all summer. It concluded with a championship game between the TFC jr team and a local orphanage. The orphanage team came out victorious! The committee maintained the field, some acted as coaches, and referees. Each youth team was equipped with uniforms donated during the re-branding of Northern Utah soccer team, Bountiful Rush. There were 12 teams in the inaugural season. We look forward to building this league even larger to give the youth in the area an opportunity to grow and experience through athletics.
Each time we return to La Ferme Blanchard Tommy FC holds exhibition games which inevitably turn into a village wide event complete with music, dancers, halftime performances and, of course, a soccer match or two.
We look forward to continuing our work with Tommy FC and its supporters to build a stronger more resilient La Ferme Blanchard.
Tommy FC pou lavi!