For the Love of Soccer

By Giving List Staff   |   November 18, 2022
San Francisco Youth Soccer is a comprehensive community soccer organization, benefiting San Francisco youth. Our mission is to support youth soccer and leadership through sport.

In Scotty Kober’s eyes, soccer is the most versatile sport in the world. Anywhere, anytime, anyone can play – all that is needed is a ball.  

“I’ve played soccer absolutely everywhere, from the sidewalks of Vietnam to the Great Pyramid of Giza,” she said. “There isn’t a place in the world where there isn’t a ball – or something that can be used as one,” referencing tied up shirts she saw used as a ball in a refugee camp.

For many the world over, Kober points out, soccer is the glue that creates community, whether across oceans, over borders… or down the street at the neighborhood park. 

That’s why Kober describes San Francisco Youth Soccer (SFYS) – the soccer-focused nonprofit she’s been executive director of since 2011 – as having evolved from “just a soccer league,” to a “soccer-based community organization focused on youth leadership.” 

The health benefits, self-esteem, and valuable leadership skills kids acquire while playing team sports is without question, Kober says. In recent years, the lean yet scrappy SFYS team of five has transformed the organization, which has roots in the San Francisco soccer scene since 1999, into a thriving ecosystem for the youth of the 21st century.

In addition to high-quality, affordable local league play, SFYS has developed youth leadership programming that’s fully integrated within its organization. SFYS offers mentoring, a Youth Advisory Council (YAC), a dynamic online community portal, and training workshops for kids eager to become referees and coaches. Building out this support network for players, referees, volunteers, and coaches includes applying training, service hours, and a pathway to paid employment, connecting community through sport. 

Enaam Maqsood undertook coaching and referee training due to his love of the game but ended up learning valuable life skills along the way. And the $25 an hour he earned created incentive, too. 

“I learned a lot about myself teaching other people and it helped me grow as a person,” Maqsood said, now in college. “Even my family sees it – how I’ve been able to resolve conflicts in the house or with friends from learning how to coach and referee through SFYS.” 

Despite ever-widening income gaps in the city and skyrocketing prices, SFYS only recently raised fees after twenty-plus years. A rarity in these days of high inflation and pay-to-play models. And though post-pandemic it was impossible to survive without increasing registration fees, it remains $100-$150 per season to play in leagues, 10 to 20 times less expensive than nearly every soccer club in San Francisco and among the most affordable in the nation.


San Francisco Youth Soccer

Donate now!
Executive Director: Scotty Kober
(415) 504-8132
Director of Coaching & Programs: Lee Dunne
(415) 572-9623


To support youth soccer and leadership through sport. 

Begin to Build a Relationship

We know you care about where your money goes and how it is used. Connect with this organization’s leadership in order to begin to build this important relationship. Your email will be sent directly to this organization’s Director of Development and/or Executive Director.

I’ve been a soccer parent, a STAR, a team manager, and a coach. SFYS has been more than just a game coordination organization, and I’ve really appreciated all of your efforts towards building up grassroots soccer in the city. The coaching resources, the STAR program, and the focus on sportsmanship and development are just some of the things that come to mind.
David Wehr, SFYS Volunteer

SFYS @ School Access to Sport for All Youth

The San Francisco Youth Soccer SFYS @ School Program needs your financial support to expand its current reach to additional schools in the San Francisco area. Your donations will allow their program to send coaches to more elementary schools during lunch, recess, and after school, allowing students who may not otherwise be able to play soccer to engage in pick-up games.

This innovative approach to making soccer available to all children allows kids to play soccer with their friends in a familiar space. There are no tryouts and no driving to get to a field. It’s inclusive sports at its best.

While the program is free to the schools, it requires funding to pay the coaches. $1,000 provides 20 hours/a semester of enriching, emboldening soccer play within a San Francisco school. More than 60 local elementary and middle school teams participate in SF Youth Soccer leagues. Please consider supporting their efforts to extend that community off the pitch and onto the playground!

Key Supporters

The Spaan-Woodruff Family
The Ghali Family
The Bronson Family
The Sewell Family
The Danison Family
The Kwan Family
The Fritz Family
The Colella Family
The Blessing Family
Sandy Choi
Loretta Choy
Sylviane Francou
San Francisco Orthodontics
John and Rosemarie Shield