On January 3rd & 4th, 2015, we held our annual Carlsbad United F.C. ‘Giving Back’ fundraiser. The fundraiser consisted of in house scrimmages between our CUFC teams. Last January, the recipient of our fundraising was former player Aaron Loy who unfortunately had to have his legs amputated after surviving a deadly strain of meningitis. We managed to raise over $20,000 for Aaron and this year we were hoping to make a similar impact for our chosen recipients, the Lopez family. To view our very special efforts please watch the video below.

The recipients of our ‘Giving Back’ fundraiser this year was Carlsbad family, the Lopez’s. Their son Marcos (a freshman at CHS and playing JV soccer) has been a Carlsbad United F.C. player (both with Wave & Lightning) since he was 6 years old, and parents, Alma & Raul, are regular volunteers with the club, giving up countless hours to help with all the club’s tournaments & events.

So why did they need our help?
The Lopez’s also have two other sons, Miguel, aged 10 (2nd grader at Kelly Elementary), and Eric, aged 18 (a freshman at Cal Poly Pomona). Both Eric & Miguel have Muscular Distrophy (MD). Miguel can walk for very short distances, but he is already using a wheelchair and has more recently lost the ability to climb stairs. Unfortunately Eric can no longer walk. When attending college at Pomona his mother Alma has to stay with him in his dorm to ensure he has the care he requires.

The Lopez’s had a vehicle that was not equipped for physically disabled passengers and this forced them to miss out on many family events e.g. going to watch Marcos play soccer. In general, their vehicle had made everyday transport next to impossible for the family.  The solution to their situation was purchasing a vehicle that has the ability to load wheelchairs but unfortunately that is much beyond their financial means. Our plan was to fundraise so we could assist their ability to put down a large down payment for what would be a ‘life changing’ vehicle but during our fundraising we received a surprise donation.

How did we help?
We initially managed to raise just over $10,000 towards a deposit but during this fundraising effort Scott Shroppshire, a former Carlsbad Resident, stepped forward and donated a 2003 Ford Econoline E250 wheelchair equipped van. The vehicle needed a good bit of work and rejuvenation to bring it back to life but after just over $2,000 in expenses we were able to present a fully functional wheelchair equipped van as well as just over $8000 for further repairs and maintenance to the Lopez family.

This is yet another tremendous effort by the club and further evidence of how important our January fundraising scrimmages are. We look forward to helping another worthy community cause in 2016!