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Kids In Cleats Inc

Cause Area

  • Children & Youth
  • Education & Literacy
  • Health & Medicine
  • International
  • Sports & Recreation


207 Inwood AvenueMontclair, NJ 07043 United States

Organization Information

Mission Statement

Kids In Cleats uses soccer as the vehicle for children to rise out of poverty through education, self-empowerment and sport in Cameroon, Africa. Through sport the goal is to engage young people and their families and help with education, food security and relationships with job training programs. This will provide the individual and community with the ability to break the cycle of poverty and improve the standard of living. A special effort will be made to have a specific girls’ program. This specialized program will focus on empowering these young girls and providing them with the tools to succeed within their social and familial environments.


From the moment Julio Tsasse and Erica Gerstman (and Erica's children) joined forces in 2019, Kids In Cleats has been a host for collaborative compassion. They have created a program that will eventually help the people of Mbouda, Cameroon break the cycle of poverty for generations to come. We have already acquired and cleared a 5 acre swath of land in order to build a proper soccer field, have room for a community center and eventually dorming facilities for our players. The field is being constructed as we speak and a security wall is going up. This summer we are planning to host our first tryouts for our girls and boys competitive teams. During the current building phase, we have been able to employ and provide a living wage to 25 people and therefore, 25 families have been able to afford food, water, electricity, medication, and education for their children. Our ultimate goal will be to have our players, with the help of our connections, move to bigger youth academies in Europe and Asia or move on to Universities in the US or Europe with the help of soccer or academic scholarships. This will give our players a much better chance to find their own path that will eventually allow them to return to Mbouda with resources and help, and continue following the path of giving back as Julio has. If each player returns with something, the cycle of poverty in this community can easily be broken.


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