About the Dogwood Duathlon
The Dogwood Duathlon was organized in 2010 to encourage youth participation in
exercise and sports. The race provides an introduction to friendly competition with an emphasis on enjoyment of exercise, good sportsmanship and personal fitness.
The Dogwood Duathlon is an annual fundraiser for the SOCA U14 boys and girls soccer teams to support their participation in a trip to Spain to compete in the Donosti Cup. The teams are made up of talented and committed young players who play in the highly competitive Club Champions League, and are eager for the opportunity to play internationally. The trip provides each player with an opportunity to experience the rich culture and history of Spain, bond with their teammates and meet players their age from many different countries who have a common bond - the love of soccer.
In addition, a portion of the Dogwood Duathlon proceeds go to the Matt Henderson Fund, which provides reduced SOCA fees to deserving families. The Fund supports the Outreach Program, which serves children throughout the City of Charlottesville and Albemarle County who encounter financial, language, or technological barriers. It targets families from three primary populations: families in publicly supported housing, recent immigrant Latino families, and refugee families from countries such as Kenya, Sierra Leone, Burma, and Iraq. SOCA’s goal is to include all children who show a passion for the game. The SOCA Outreach Program has been a proven positive experience in these children’s lives, exposing them to helpful role models and new friends. It is the club's goal to include these children into the soccer community which exposes them to skills to be used on and off the field to succeed in other areas of their lives.
The Hold My Hand for Life Foundation was created in honor of Ethan and Isaac Lamm who were born in May of 2009 with an inherited anemia (Fanconi anemia) that will eventually require bone marrow transplant at a young age. The Hold My Hand for Life Foundation assists community members with joining the Be the Match National Marrow Donor Program and potentially becoming a life-saving bone marrow match for which a family has been hoping and praying. The foundation also supports Fanconi anemia research and future medical expenses for Ethan and Isaac. Duathlon bystanders will have the opportunity to join the bone marrow registry with a simple cheek swab on race day. Making the commitment to become a bone marrow donor may give Ethan and Isaac what no child should have to ask for: a future.
The Soccer Organization of Charlottesville-Albemarle (SOCA) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization designed to foster a love of soccer for all ages and levels of play beginning with the U6 entry level program, Recreational and Advanced, Classic Travel and Premier travel teams as well as adult programs and provides financial aid to participants through the Matt Henderson Fund.