Sanneh Foundation Trains North Minneapolis Hmong, Latino Soccer Players

Last week, 40 North Minneapolis soccer players poured into Farview park for the Sanneh Foundation spring soccer clinic.Most of the soccer players were Hmong and Latino.  Many of the Hmong soccer players were born in Thai refugee camps.Several times during the year, the Sanneh foundation comes to north Minneapolis and provides training for players from poor families who could not normally afford this type of coachingSanneh Foundation fits donated soccer shoes on the feet of North Minneapolis soccer playersIn addition, the Sanneh Foundation has donated soccer shoes, soccer balls, water bottles, backpacks and shirts to the players.  The Sanneh soccer camps emphasize soccer as a fun part of a healthy lifestyle of exercise and good  eating.  Both veteran soccer players and those trying soccer for the first time enjoy coming to the clinics.  This April, in addition to learning soccer skills, players learned about good sportsmanship,  and even learned  a little Italian.  In  October,  the Sanneh foundation combines its soccer clinic with a Halloween party.  Sanneh Foundation Halloween Party and Soccer ClinicIn the fall, the North Minneapolis  Hmong and Latino soccer players play in the Minneapolis Parks League, for the Farview Park and Bethune Park soccer teams.  All the players have gotten training and soccer balls from the Sanneh Foundation, and most wear soccer shoes donated by the Sanneh Foundation.2014 Farview 13u soccer team celebrates winning Minneapolis Parks regular season championshipWith the Sanneh Foundation’s help, the Farview Park soccer team has won two city-wide tournaments and six regular season championships in the past three years, and the Bethune soccer team has won two city-wide tournaments and been runners-up in a third city-wide tournament.2014 Bethune 13u soccer team, finalists in Minneapolis Parks city-wide tournamentEach March, the Sanneh Foundation holds its major fundraiser, Gala4Goals.    And every year the Farview soccer team comes down and tells the participants how the Sanneh Foundation helps North Minneapolis soccer players.Farview soccer players at Sanneh Foundation’s Gale4Goals fundraiserIt is the soccer players’ way of saying Thank You Sanneh Foundation. Continue Reading


Comic Books from the Margins

Comic Books from the Margins on Vimeo. Presented by Gazillion Strong, Big Brain Comics, Moon Palace Books, Boneshaker Books, Ancestry Books, and Ramsey County Libraries, these series of workshops is aimed at teens and pre-teens. each bookstore and library will select comic books and graphic novels in which the central character(s) are from marginalized communities, such as the POC (people of color), LGBTQ, adoptee, foster care, and disabled communities. The books will be presented to preteens, teens, and their families by knowledgeable authors, activists, performers, and comic book connoisseurs.Comic Books from the Margins series gives an opportunity to people to tell their stories, and pick out books that are reflective of their culture.”We want different kinds of narratives,” said Ancestry Books owner Chaun Webster. “That don’t reduce us to these small, tokenistic stereotypes.”Future Comic Books from the Margins will be held at Boneshaker Books, the Minnesota History Center and Big Brain Comics. Check out Gazillion Strong’s website for more information Continue Reading

(l-r) Joyce Ester, Kent Pekel, Dean Barbara Butts Williams. Photos by Charles Hallman

Minnesota college students face loan crisis

Kids from low-income families, communities of color hardest hit by debtMinnesota is fifth among U.S. “high-debt states” where college student debt upon graduation on average has surpassed $30,000, says The Institute for College Access & Success (TICAS). The 2014 project student debt report that TICAS released last November points out that in 2013 seven in 10 college graduates from public and private nonprofit colleges owe an average of $28,400 in student loans, up two percent from 2012.Minnesota 2013 college graduates loan debt is $30,894. Among state public colleges, Winona State grads had the highest at $33,610, and Minnesota-Crookston was lowest at $27,311. College of St. Scholastica ($43,113) tops the state private institutions while Macalester College ($21,939) was the lowest, says the nonprofit California-based organization.According to a United Negro College Fund (UNCF) fact sheet, Federal Student Loans increased seven percent (54 percent to 61 percent) while grants decreased seven percent (46 percent to 39 percent) over the period 1992 to 2011.Conversely, 60 percent of Black college students qualify for pell grants. Continue Reading