Little Haiti soccer (includes video story)

Little Haiti FC is a free and competitive youth soccer organization that has tackled financial, administrative and travel issues since 2014. There has also been personal tragedy.

The league recently joined the United Premier Soccer League Division 1 South Florida Conference for the spring 2022 season. UPSL is a pro development league known across North America. It was formed in 2011 and currently has more than 325 nationwide teams.

Forward Alexander Charles says he was overlooked because he didn’t have the money to join other leagues, but President Gomez Laleau had other plans for him.

“Teams I played for, they told me I had talent, but I needed money to pay,” said Charles. “I couldn’t play for them because I didn’t have any money. But I found Mr. Laleau, he said everything is for free, just come down and practice with us and play with us.”

The senior team recently played on the anniversary of a tragedy that struck that team three years ago. In May 2019, Richecarde Dumay, 17, Lens Desir, 15, and Gedeon Desir, 13, were waiting to catch a bus to their championship soccer game, when a woman fatally struck the three players while driving under the influence.

Though it has been a tough time for members of the Little Haiti Football Club, they did not let it change them. All 12 seniors on the team bring joy to the coaching staff, founders and family as they receive scholarships to head off to college.

Anya Joseph is a digital broadcasting major with a passion for athletics. Enjoys travel and marketing. Looks to pursue sports journalism and sports psychology. Her goal is to work as a production assistant and sideline reporter telling the stories behind the brand.