SIGNATURE EVENTS & FUNDRAISERS
Dynamo & Dash Auctions
In 2021, Dynamo and Dash fans raised more than $20,000 by auctioning unique game-worn gear and memorabilia in support of several initiatives such as Hispanic Heritage Month, Soccer for All and Dynamo Charities Weekend. Money from the auctions also went to provide schools supplies and soccer equipment to local Houston ISD middle schools.
Dynamo / Dash Fire Sale
Dynamo Charities hosted its annual Fire Sale during the Houston Dash open scrimmage on Saturday, March 27. This year’s Fire Sale featured team-worn gear from both the Dynamo and Dash, as well as memorabilia featuring the old Houston Dynamo and Dash logos. Fans were able to pick up some of these one-of-a-kind items while helping to support Dynamo Charities. This year’s Fire Sale raised more than $40,000.
Dynamo Charities Weekend
Both Houston Dynamo FC and the Houston Dash took part in the inaugural Dynamo Charities Weekend on May 23-24. During Dynamo Charities Weekend, fans and partners helped to raise funds for the organization to help support growing the game of soccer. Players participated by creating customized cleats that represented personal stories and organizations that were close to their hearts. These cleats were then auctioned off to fans and supporters. Houston Dynamo FC and Houston Dash partners also participated by making monetary donations to Dynamo Charities throughout the game, including Kroger’s Corner Kicks for Kids as well Fanatics and Levy making general donations to the organization.
Houston Winter Freeze Fundraiser:
Last February, the City of Houston and its residents faced an unprecedented winter freeze that affected thousands of residents in the area. Houston Dynamo FC and Houston Dash players were some of the first to step up and help by creating the Winter Storm Relief Fund. The fund was started in conjunction with Dynamo Charities to help raise money for organizations that were supporting those affected most by the freeze. The players raised more than $30,000 in a matter of days to support The Houston Food Bank as well as Kids’ Meals Houston.
Kids’ Meals Annual Packing Event with Kroger:
Over the last four years Houston Dynamo FC and the Houston Dash have supported Kids’ Meals Houston by volunteering to pack lunches and distribute them throughout the city. This year was no different, for the second year both organizations partnered with Kroger to help pack more than 20,000 meals for kids in need in the Houston community at PNC Stadium.
Blood Drives - 2021
Houston Dynamo FC, the Houston Dash and PNC Stadium partnered with The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to host two blood drives in 2021. Hospitals across Houston saw a shortage of blood donations, and our staff and fans stepped up to help. In total, we collected enough blood to help more than 300 patients at MD Anderson facilities as well as other hospitals throughout the city.
MD Anderson Boot Walk - 2021
Dynamo and Dash staff, fans and players joined the annual MD Anderson Boot Walk to End Cancer. While the event was held virtually, Houston Dynamo FC and Houston Dash staff members walked around PNC Stadium while fans and players participated in their own neighborhoods, on Saturday, November 6 to show their support for the Boot Walk. Discoveries at MD Anderson lead to new treatment standards everywhere, giving all those touched by cancer the best chance for survival. Team Hold It Down raised $15,600 to help fund groundbreaking research, improvements in cancer care delivery and development of better diagnostic tools and tests to improve early detection.
Omen Gaming Charity Challenge
During the 2021 season, Houston Dynamo FC and the Houston Dash partnered with Omen Gaming to host a variety of events, including the Omen Gaming Charity Challenge. During this event, Dynamo and Dash players teamed up to play for a cause. Teams headed up by Dynamo midfielder Memo Rodriguez and Dash midfielder Maegan Rosa competed in a gaming tournament to raise money for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Houston and Kids’ Meals Houston. Team Memo came out victorious during this year’s tournament and donated $8,000 to Boys and Girls Clubs of Houston, while Team Rosa was able to donate $2,000 to Kids’ Meals Houston.
Houston Food Bank Volunteering
Houston Dynamo FC, the Houston Dash and Dynamo Charities kicked off the year with a volunteer event featuring staff members and club supporters. During the event our volunteers helped to pack more than 600 boxes for the Backpack Buddies program, which provides meals to kids and their families throughout the weekend.
Equipment Donation to Houston ISD
Each year as new equipment comes in for our teams, we like to make sure that the old equipment gets put to good use. This year we were able donate more than 300 water jugs, coolers and new water bottles to the Houston Independent School District athletics department to distribute to schools in need.
To help celebrate Earth Day and MLS WORKS’ Greener Goals initiative, Houston Dynamo FC and the Houston Dash teamed up with Texas Pride and Keep Houston Beautiful to participate in a service project on April 10. Dynamo and Dash staff members, fans as well as staff from Texas Pride gathered at Emancipation Park to help build new flower beds, re-mulch trees and clean up the park as a part of Keep Houston Beautiful Day.
Dash at Combined Arms-
Houston Dash captain Jane Campbell, forward Bri Visalli and goalkeeper Amanda Dennis joined Combined Arms for their Vax and Snacks event on May 23. The players handed out hygiene kits and food boxes to active and retired military personnel in Houston. The event also allowed those in need to receive free vaccinations at the Combined Arms offices in downtown Houston.
Houston Dynamo FC, the Houston Dash and Houston Dynamo Academy provided opportunities for players to tour historical areas of Houston and Galveston to learn about Juneteenth and the connection to Texas and the Houston community. Houston Dash players visited Emancipation Park located in the Third Ward and learned about the history of the park and its founders.
Houston Dynamo FC players from both the first team and the Academy went down to Galveston to the learn about the history of Juneteenth, where it originated from in Galveston, they were then able to speak with members of the Juneteenth Legacy project and learn about the historical relevance of the date and those involved in it.
MLS and Houston Dynamo FC also participated in league wide initiative on Juneteenth in which the players all wore jerseys that featured Juneteenth themed numbers. These jerseys were then auctioned off to fans. All proceeds from the auction went back to Emancipation Park Conservatory.
Operation Stocking Stuffer
During the 2021 holiday season, Houston Dynamo FC and the Houston Dash partnered with the Houston Fire Department for Operation Stocking Stuffer. Operation Stocking Stuffer provides toys for more than 20,000 children each year in the greater Houston community. Houston Dynamo FC and Dash players took park in a shopping trip to help purchase toys for the event, late that week more than 20 staff members helped sort through more than 10,000 toys to help package for the event. Then on Saturday, December 18, staff, players and Dynamo Diesel helped the Houston Fire Department distribute the toys to more than 7,000 families during and drive through event.
Futbolito in the City
Futbolito in the City provided free soccer programing and open play to youth in the greater Houston area. This program used the power of soccer to provide an opportunity for youth to pursue their interest in playing the sport and gaining new skills at zero cost to their families. Houston Dynamo FC and the Houston Dash provided free coaching for kids aged 6-14 for 90 minutes once a week for 10 weeks at various locations. Futbolito in the City was hosted at Cloverland Park, Jane Long Academy and Sugar Grove Academy. Kids also received Dynamo and Dash branded prizes for attending multiple weeks throughout each session and received a special visit from Dynamo and Dash players.
Hispanic Heritage Month
To help celebrate Hispanic Heritage month the Dynamo partnered with 76 and adidas to create special warm up tops designed by local artist Daniel Anguilu. These warmup tops were then auctioned off with the proceeds being used to donate essential school supplies to Jane Long Academy as a part of 76®’s Drive for Change initiative. The league’s official apparel and equipment provider, adidas, joined the effort by donating equipment for the school’s soccer program and commissioned a mural by Daniel Anguilu on the school’s grounds. These items were all unveiled at a ceremony for Jane Long Academy students on the Dynamo and Dash branded mini-pitches. Players from both the Dynamo and Dash hosted a soccer clinic for the kids of Jane Long Academy after the ceremony concluded.
Mini-pitches Grand Opening at Cloverland Park
Through the leadership of our ownership group and in partnership with the U.S. Soccer Foundation, Houston Dynamo FC, the Houston Dash and Dynamo Charities built two new mini pitches at Cloverland Park. Each mini pitch is a gated outdoor hardcourt surface lined similar to a soccer pitch with lights. These mini pitches will provide a safe place for children to play and develop year-round.
The mini pitches at Cloverland Park are the 10th and 11th created by Houston Dynamo FC as a part of an ongoing initiative by the organization. The goal is to grow the game of soccer in Houston by providing free access to safe spaces for kids to play. The Club also offered free programming for local kids from surrounding neighborhoods as a part of Dynamo’s Futbolito in the City program. The Dynamo and Dash will look to open 10 more mini pitches over the next three years.
Soccer Night Out
Our club provided a fun filled festival to excite and bring together the Houston community. Fans who attended had the opportunity to interact with players from Houston Dynamo FC as well as the club mascot Diesel. There were outdoor yard games, inflatables, soccer activities and much more. On top of all the outdoor activities, fans also had a chance to win free tickets to an upcoming Dynamo and Dash game through exciting raffles.
International Women’s Day - 2020
This year’s International Women’s Day speaker panel was held virtually due to the on-going COVID pandemic. Students and young female business professionals had the opportunity to log on to a live Zoom call that featured speakers from the Houston Dash front office including Vanessa Scott, the club’s Vice President of Finance; Chief Revenue Officer Dionna Widder, Houston Dash defender Meagan Oyster and international soccer player Charlotte Potts. The women touched on subjects such as equal pay and ways to take steps to advance in their career.
Science of Soccer - 2020
The Dynamo and Dash Science of Soccer program is an educational curriculum aimed at encouraging middle school students to learn about Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) concepts with a focus on using soccer as an educational tool.
Due to the ongoing COVID pandemic, the Club worked with Science of Sport to create a virtual teacher training and provide 20 teachers with STEM Science of Soccer works books for students as well as individual STEM packs for students that included tools needed to complete multiple STEM activities.
Kick Childhood Cancer
Each September, Major League Soccer, the Dynamo and the Dash intensify the effort to create awareness for children battling cancer. This year, Houston Dynamo FC players wore personalized warmup jerseys with 18 pediatric cancer patients’ names on the back. These jerseys symbolized that those patients battling cancer are not alone in the fight. Each honorary team member received a Houston Dynamo FC fan pack filled with team memorabilia and autographed items.
Pediatric cancer patients were also incorporated into the Dynamo’s Starting XI introductions in a creative way this year, as players were introduced with hand-drawn portraits by patients at MD Anderson.
Food Drop Off at MD Anderson
Houston Dynamo FC and the Houston Dash along with Raising Cane’s surprised families at the MD Anderson hospital in the Texas Medical Center with lunch for the day. More than 50 meals were provided to show the Club’s support for the families and their children at MD Anderson.
Virtual Bingo and Art Classes - 2020
During the month of September, Dynamo and Dash Players joined patients at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to participate in virtual art classes, as well as some thrilling games of Bingo.
Actions Matter- Anti Bullying Program
Houston Dynamo FC’s Actions Matter program takes a practical approach to bullying prevention by empowering students to create change, whether they’re engaging in bullying, on the receiving end of it, or witnessing it in their school. Students learn and engage in real-life scenarios to practice their sills in character and community building areas. The Club activated this program in over 23 schools with more than 1,500 students participating.
Students who completed the program from Burbank Middles School received a special virtual visit from Houston Dynamo FC defender Sam Junqua and Houston Dash defender Haley Hanson as a part of the program. Both players spoke with students about the importance of taking action to make sure bullying doesn’t take place in their schools. Students also received prizes from the team and will have the chance to come out to a game during the 2022 season.
Every Save Makes a Difference - 2021
Every Save Makes a Difference is an equipment donation program presented by MLS WORKS, UniMás and Allstate. For every save made by a Houston Dynamo goalkeeper during games televised on Univision, TUDN or UniMás, the network and AllState donated $500 worth of equipment for local soccer teams for the season. This year, Dynamo goalkeepers raised $10,000 which benefited six middle schools in the Houston Independent School District. In an effort to help grow the game of soccer in Houston, Houston Dynamo FC partnered with the HISD Athletic department to identify local middle schools in need of resources to help continue or launch their middle school soccer teams.
Kick It Tournament with the Boys and Girls Club and The Embassy of Qatar - 2021
Dynamo Charities partnered with the Embassy of the State of Qatar in the United States to host the Kick It Soccer Tournament with eight local Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Houston. More than 200 kids from these clubs were invited out to Houston Sports Park in May to participate in a morning filled with soccer skills sessions and a mini tournament. Each participate received a jersey, shorts and gift bag courtesy of The U.S. Embassy of Qatar and Dynamo Charities.
Partners in Development - 2021
Partners in Development is a collaborative and educational platform created by Dynamo Charities and the Houston Dynamo Academy in which motivated and progressive soccer clubs, directors and coaches from the Greater Houston area work more closely together with the focus on coaching education and player and club development.
These monthly programs bring coaches together to learn and share ideas at Houston Sports Park (HSP), PNC Stadium, and other Partners in Development locations, creating a unique and dynamic network for coach education, club collaboration, mentorship and learning opportunities. The focus is on improving the quality of development of the youth, through coaching education.
The Partners in Development program has taken place through the Coaches Collaborative, monthly zoom presentations with top youth developers from around the world who share their experiences and insights. More than 500 coaches from various clubs and teams have joined the events in the recent months, with guests like former Manchester United coach Rene Muelensteen, Doug Lemov – author of ‘Teach Like a Champion’, Keith Tozer of US Futsal, among many others. The Partners in Development is free and open for all motivated coaches and clubs.
Soccer Starts at Home - 2021
Soccer Starts at Home™ is an innovative new program based on the philosophy of world-renowned youth developer Tom Byer targeted at children ages 2-8 and their parents. The Houston Dynamo and Dash made history as the first club in the United States to implement this revolutionary program on a large scale throughout its home market. The Club partnered with educational leaders in Houston Independent School District, Spring ISD, Fort Bend ISD, Avance Houston, KIPP Schools and the Houston Parks and Recreation Department to develop Soccer Starts at Home™ programs for thousands of young kids, families and educators throughout the region.
In 2021, Houston Dynamo FC and Dynamo Charities continued to make strong progress with the Soccer Starts at Home™ program by developing a special developmental partnership with KIPP Schools and the University of Houston- Health and Human Performance Department to begin research and design around the school PE program specifically for the Kindergarden through second grade ages. With the help of Houston Dynamo FC staff and trained volunteers who supported and observed classes, conducted analysis, and collected data, the program was introduced to PE Teachers and classes of six different KIPP schools- Legacy, Climb, Peace, Explore, Mosaic and Zenith, where more than 2,000 K-2 students began learning age-appropriate skills and methods. Preliminary findings have been very positive and continued research will take place in 2022, with a pilot program for grades 3-4.
The mission of the school program is to develop a transformative Physical Education program, designed specifically for young children ages 5-9 years old.
- A program that is inclusive, developmental, and which removes all barriers to entrance.
- A program that brings together experts in teaching, developing, and research.
- Focus on each child’s individual development through the acquisition of skills through ball-mastery.
- Teach the Teachers: a program that PE teachers can learn and receive through training and education.
- On-going support to build confidence in PE teachers who have never played soccer.
- With clear and proven developmental methodology and customized periodization.
- Which provides both coordinative (balance, two-footedness) + cognitive development (focus, effort)
- Which inspires, educates, partners, and supports parents and at home development.
- Which improves the health of children and the inspires more parent- child engagement at an early age.
- A fun and challenging program that young kids will enjoy and remember!
At each session, the students learned basic soccer skills designed to help young children develop balance, coordination, and agility in a fun way. This program differs from other youth soccer programs, as there is a request for parent involvement. After each session students were given “homework” – to practice the skills they learned with mom and dad using the size one soccer ball given to them. Students are taught skills such as working on keeping the ball close rather than kicking it away and encouraging creativity and experimentation, but most of all, have fun! Research has shown that developing new skills – whether those are athletic, musical, or artistic – at an early age jump-starts the cognitive development in young minds.
HOUSTON DYNAMO UNIFIED TEAM PRESENTED BY 76® - 2021
For the fifth consecutive season, the Houston Dynamo Football Club, 76® and Special Olympics Texas collaborated to leverage the power of sports to promote an environment of social inclusion and acceptance. This year the Houston Dynamo Unified team was made up of members from the 2020 team as well as a new players who made their debut in 2021.
Signing Day -2020
In June, Houston Dynamo goalkeeper Michael Nelson and midfielder Memo Rodriguez helped to introduce the 2021 Houston Dynamo Unified team during our annual signing day. Members of the team heard from Club president John Walker and 76 executive Sonny Villarreal about the importance of being a part of this team and representing Houston Dynamo FC. Each member of the team signed their official contracts and received their individual and fully customized kits, training tops and t-shirts to help represent the team.
COMMUNITY SERVICE - 2021
Throughout 2021, Club employees, players and fans all came together to complete more than 1,000 hours of community service throughout the Houston community. Houston Dynamo FC, Houston Dash, Houston Sports Park and PNC Stadium staff also participated in an organization-wide all staff volunteer day on December 9 volunteering at seven different organizations throughout the city including the Houston Food Bank, Kids Meals, Houston Pets Alive, The Ronald McDonald House, Buffalo Bayou Park and more.
Houston Pets Alive with Sam Junqua
PHOTOS - Houston Pets Alive with Sam Junqua
BY THE NUMBERS
- $120,000 donated to different charities through grants and in-kind donations
- 15,000+ tickets donated to organization as part of the Kicks 4 Kids program
- 3,000+ kids impacted by the Soccer Starts at Home program
- 1,000+ hours of community service provided by fans, players and staff
- 500+ children impacted through free soccer clinics
- 200+ player and legend community appearances