To honor PFC Nicholas A Madaras we seek to support U.S. troop and volunteer efforts in fostering peace, good will and stability across the globe by collecting soccer balls and delivering them into the hands of underprivileged children around the world. Through the simple gift of a soccer ball, we hope to perpetuate Nick’s dream of bringing a bit of hope and joy to children living in difficult circumstances.
Kick For Nick was founded in memory and in honor of PFC Nicholas A Madaras of Wilton, CT who was killed by an IED while serving in Iraq on September 3, 2006. Nick had been an avid soccer player, coach and referee during his youth. When he came home on leave in the summer of 2006 he mentioned how talented the children in Iraq were at soccer, using anything they could find as a ball (which was for the most part old tin cans). Because of his love for the sport, it was an instinctive desire to share this love with the children in his area. He asked us to send him a few balls so he could distribute them to the children in Baqubah. Sadly he never got the chance to do this.
Shortly after September 3rd 2006, we got a call from Ken Dartley of Wilton, who read about Nick’s passion for the sport and his desire to share this love with the Iraqi children. He asked if it would be alright with us to start a program of collecting soccer balls in Nick’s honor to fulfill Nick’s wish to share his passion. That was the beginning of the program “Kick For Nick.”
Starting with a few balls donated in a net in front of the James P Whipple American Legion Post 86 in Wilton, the program has grown to such an extent that nearly 50,000 soccer balls have been distributed. We have received soccer ball donations from 47 of the 50 states and prior to distribution each one is inscribed three times with Nick’s name. Initially the balls were distributed only by US troops in Iraq, but over the years in addition to soldiers, the distribution network has grown to include US military contractors, volunteers, individuals, schools, and charitable organizations. Balls have been given to underprivileged children in more than 25 countries including Afghanistan, Syria, Lebanon, Bhutan, Guatemala, Columbia and more (visit Our Impact for all of the locations).
Beyond, the distribution of soccer balls, when we have the opportunity (and the supplies), Kick For Nick has also provided uniforms, cleats, shin guards, personal hygiene supplies such as toothbrushes and toothpaste, school supplies such as pencils, notebooks and backpacks, as well as occasional food supplies.
In addition, we were very proud to work with Homes For The Brave to build a transitional home for homeless female veterans. This home is named in honor of PFC Nicholas A Madaras and is located in Bridgeport, CT.
We hope to continue collecting soccer balls and equipment and distributing them to underprivileged children all over the world. Every ball handed out generates a smile and every smile generates a memory of good will and friendship, which we hope will one day allow us all to play on one field.
The Kick For Nick Foundation is a 501c3 Organization so all donations are tax-deductible.
To see the far-reaching impact of the Kick For Nick Foundation, visit Our Impact page to learn more.
If you’d like to make a monetary donation, please click below or visit the Get Involved page to learn how to collect or send soccer balls.