D.C. United captain Steve Birnbaum has been a champion of DC SCORES for close to a decade. Photo: D.C. United
Last month, poet-athletes at Stanton Elementary had a very special game day experience when Steve Birnbaum, captain of Major League soccer team D.C. United, joined them at their Junior SCORES game day against Malcolm X Elementary School.
The professional soccer star, who serves as an ambassador for DC SCORES, visited the school as part of the “Celebrating Impact” content partnership. The series, a collaboration between Audi and The Players’ Tribune, is an extension of the Audi Goals Drive Progress program that supports and spotlights community initiatives championed by MLS athletes.
Birnbaum, who has been a supporter of DC SCORES for the past decade, chose the organization to be the recipient of a $20,000 contribution through the Audi Goals Drive Progress fund. Those funds will go towards DC SCORES’ soccer, poetry, and service-learning after-school programs. Athletes saluted in “Celebrating Impact,” as well as others endorsed by their clubs, will also have the opportunity to put forward their causes to potentially receive a $100,000 contribution.
“Steve is such a big champion of our work and we are so honored to be recognized by the Audi Goals Drive Progress program. It was wonderful to see Steve engaging with our Stanton poet-athletes yesterday and sharing his enthusiasm for our work,” said Katrina Owens, Executive Director of DC SCORES. She added, “Meeting a hometown idol at their home field, this is a day they will never forget.”
Stanton Elementary, located just 3 miles from D.C. United’s stadium, Audi Field, joined the DC SCORES program in 2021
“The DC SCORES program has brought learning through sports back to Stanton!” said Deanna Price, a DC SCORES coach and staff member at Stanton. She added, “DC SCORES allows us to apply what kids learn and maximize their learning on and off the field and in and out of the classroom.”
Birnbaum’s visit to the school comes weeks before he co-hosts One Night One Goal, DC SCORES’ annual fundraiser at Audi Field. Alongside Washington Spirit and USWNT star Ashley Hatch, Birnbaum will welcome guests to the October 12 event that includes exclusive auction items, the chance to mingle with the District’s biggest soccer stars, and poetry performances from some of the biggest spoken word artists in the DMV.
“We’re so excited to work with Steve again at One Night One Goal. Every year, his support for the event ensures that we can continue to serve more than 3,000 poet-athletes with top-class afterschool programming at no cost to them and their families,” said Owens.
“Having Steve here was amazing,” said Price of Birnbaum’s visit to the school. She continued, “Steve’s presence and engagement with DC public school students is beautiful and both teams enjoyed the experience of a lifetime — they will remember that day forever!”