The Outreach Program for Soccer (TOPSoccer) is a community-based program to give children and young adults with physical and/or intellectual disabilities the chance to step on the field. The program has been running through LIJSL for over 40 years.
Much like the mainstream LIJSL season, players participate in the spring and fall. There are several tournaments hosted by LIJSL member clubs and the year culminates with the TOPSoccer BBQ at the Peter C. Collins Soccer Park in Plainview, where every player receives an award for their participation in the program.
The start of the TOPSoccer program dates back to 1979 when Mike Ludin’s son, Craig, ran out on the field during one of his brother’s game. After that moment, Ludin wanted to find a regular place for Craig, who has Downs Syndrome, as well as other kids with disabilities to play. The TOPSoccer program has grown since and there are now 30 member clubs with active programs.