As Global program expands, soccer stars Mia Hamm and Javier “Chicharito” Hernández join Lay’s in announcing newest field in Santa Ana, Calif.
Santa Ana, California has a new Lay’s® RePlay field from the “Stay Golden” global program implemented for creation of sustainable soccer fields created out of used potato chip bags. The first U.S. opening today was attended by USWNT legend Mia Hamm and MLS star Javier “Chicharito” Hernández. “The pipeline for healthy lives in the Hispanic community expands greatly when you have access to quality fields and equipment, and the Lay’s RePlay program is a game-changer,” said Major League Soccer player and LA Galaxy striker Chicharito. He added, “As someone who lives and plays in Southern California, I’m looking forward to seeing the joy this field brings to families across the area.” This newest Lay’s RePlay field is the sixth such pitch placed around the world, with others located in South Africa, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Italy, and Mexico. Deserving underrepresented communities are delighted to play on the recycled Lay’s chip bags and packing materials that are washed, shredded and converted into an underlying layer designed to be recycled after the 10-year lifespan. Since the programs launch in 2021, more than 25,000 games and practices in underserved communities worldwide have occurred, providing access to the beloved sport on state-of-the-art soccer fields. Fellow Hispanic people and the planet are co-beneficiaries of this eco-friendly field, located at Cesar Chavez Campesino Park in Santa Ana. The Sports Techie community blog hopes this PepsiCo initiative comes to field near you soon. The Santa Ana field opens in partnership with the City of Santa Ana and Pure Game, a local non-profit that teaches children life skills through mentorship and sports-based character education.
“As a UEFA ambassador, I am proud to be a voice for Lay’s RePlay,” said Hamm, FIFA World Cup champion and two-time Olympic gold medalist. “Having access to community gathering spaces and safe playing fields must be a top priority for young people across the world. Soccer continues to see incredible growth, and with the Hispanic community being the fastest growing segment of our population – and arguably the most passionate about the game – beginning the Lay’s RePlay U.S. expansion in a key area like Santa Ana is a powerful moment.”
American Hispanic Futbol Priority
The UCLA Center for Neighborhood Knowledge study, indicates Hispanic communities were one of the hardest impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, both on a health and economic level. This new field was selected by Lay’s® and Lay’s RePlay global partners UEFA Foundation for Children and Common Goal for its rich Hispanic heritage with the goal of providing affordable access to soccer programming and education.
“Since 2021, Lay’s RePlay has had the privilege of creating beautiful soccer fields and programming to share with deserving communities across the globe. From South Africa, Brazil, and Mexico to the United Kingdom, we’ve been able to see the tremendous impact this program brings to aspiring athletes and families around the world – uniting people through a common love of soccer, providing a safe space to foster togetherness and minimizing our impact on the earth,” said Ciara Dilley, PepsiCo’s vice president of marketing for global food brands. “We are so honored to be able to play such a significant role in furthering the soccer journeys of young people here in the community of Santa Ana with the launch of our first Lay’s RePlay soccer field in the U.S.!”
Lay’s RePlay builds on work done by Lay’s and the UEFA Foundation for Children that delivered three artificial soccer fields in the Za’atari and Azraq Refugee Camps in 2017 and 2018 and have since provided 35,000 people access to the sport.
“Lay’s has been such an incredible partner to work with over the years and we are thrilled to support bringing the Lay’s RePlay program into the U.S.,” said Urs Kluser, general secretary for UEFA Foundation for Children. “Through our partnership, we are able to put our best resources forward and work together to gather communities around the world through the joy of the sport.”
Sports Techie, the Latino sporting impact on American soccer are cultural, economic and political.
I dedicate this blog to my recently deceased Dad. He was a champion for the Hispanic community and farm workers. Among his contributions is Hall of Fame placement at radio KDNA, the first Spanish language radio station in Eastern Washington he helped launch. Mi Padre was a broadcast pioneer for Seattle Sounders games at the Kingdome in the old NASL delivering matches in espanol to the state of Washington listeners. He worked with El Centro de la Raza in Seattle during their early days. Cesar Chavez once spent the night in our home. My Father was a Michigan State University graduate. He was then the youngest inductee in the Peace Corp at the time, going to Ecuador to put in physical education programs where he met my athletic, Ecuadorian Mom. They were married 57-years.
I know my proud Papa would have loved this blog and the Lay’s RePlay football Fields as much as me and the Santa Ana Hispanic community do too.
See you later sportstechie in Seattle, Atlanta and around the world!
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