Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Contact us

Please email us at to make arrangements for donations of soccer balls and or equipment.

For monetary donations, please make checks payable to Eric's Goal and send to the address below:

Eric's Goal
3160 Sandy Hook Rd
Street, MD 21154

We are grateful to each of you for your help in supplying and sending soccer balls and equipment to the Iraqi children!

The Staff
Eric's Goal

Sunday, June 18, 2006

News & a new total!

First of all, thanks to the recent contribution of 57 (!) soccer balls by Fran Duffy and friends from Long Island, New York (including her daughter Meghan Duffy in Wisconsin and friends Patricia Bolen and Brooks Kuykendall in South Carolina), we have crossed the 1,500 mark!! Our current total is 1,528 soccer balls collected. Good work team, keep them rolling in!

In other news, we are in the process of making Eric's Goal into a non-profit corporation with tax exemption status. We have the corporation status, as Eric's Goal Inc. and are working on the tax exemption status with the help of Eric's cousin Carolyn (thanks to Carolyn and husband Craig for sponsoring us in this and helping with research). We will also be acquiring a P.O. Box for donations to Eric's Goal and posting that address here.

This effort has been very exciting and fulfulling for all of us, as we hope it has been for you. We enjoy the personal interactions and knowing your stories. Eric is also able to read your stories as they are posted here and on the family website. We hope that all of our efforts will have a similarly positive effect on the lives of the Iraqi children!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Soccer balls in memoriam

Kristen, Adam and their son Alex have donated soccer balls to Eric's Goal in memoriam of their good friend, Lance Corporal Leon B. Deraps USMC who was killed in action in Iraq May 6, 2006. Each ball is personally inscribed by the family. This is a beautiful tribute to a brave soldier.

"Our contribution is in loving memory of Lance Cpl. Leon B. Deraps who died while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in Anbar province, Iraq on May 6, 2006. May you never be forgotten Leon." -Kristen, Adam & Alex Barnes

Here's Alex displaying the inscribed soccer balls.

Kristen is friends with Leon's oldest sister and was friends with four of his siblings in high school. The Deraps family's youngest, Leon just graduated high school a year ago. The Barnes family were unable to attend the funeral of their good friend but witnessed the overwhelming community support through pictures and news articles. Protestors attended the visitation (though not the funeral) but fortunately, the Patriot Guard Riders (a group of motorcyclists who have been performing this function) were there and acted as a barrier between the protestors and the grieving family and friends of the soldier. These picketers represent a specific church and are pushing a particular agenda, at what many would consider an inappropriate moment for these grieving families. A bill was recently passed by Congress (the funeral protest ban) which would limit the rights of protestors at military funerals. The bill is currently at the White House. Click here to read a news story (from May 25) about the funeral protest ban. Many states have passed similar bills to the federal one.

Monday, June 05, 2006

SOCCER SHACK Scores Again!

John McHugh and Hope Lookingland of Soccer Shack, located in Bel Air, MD continue to amaze us with their collection of donations for Eric's Goal! Today alone the Soccer Shack has contributed another 10 jerseys, 8 shorts, and 1 T-shirt! The equipment and clothing is both used and new. We have been packing up and shipping out the goods nearly as fast as we receive them.

I've done a quick addition of their totals and this is what they have collected thus far:

62 soccer balls / 76 pr of cleats / 24 shin guards
29 team vests / 1 net bag / 7 cloth bags
8 goalie gloves / 49 pr socks / 58 jerseys
2 jackets / 11 pr shorts / 5 pr pants
18 T-shirts / 1 compression sleeve
15 cones / 37 silver and 26 gold medals.

Isn't that impressive? Hope & John, we can't thank you enough. Knowing that the Iraqi children will be using this equipment must make you both smile as much as it does the rest of us, including Eric and the Iraqi children!

Thank you again to John, Hope and SOCCER SHACK for all you do to make this world a better place!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Soccer ball hats?

Thanks to Chad Brassil, Joyce Besch and their son Benjamin for donating soccer balls to Eric's Goal!!

Chad says that the idea of putting deflated soccer balls on their heads was Benjamin's. He grabbed one while running around the house naked and put it on his head! I guess they managed to get him dressed this time!

Friday, June 02, 2006

Gifts from the 4th Grade class at Bryn Mawr School

Today (May 31,2006) Ginny (Eric's fiancee) and I had the unique pleasure to meet with Mrs. Talley and her 4th Grade Class at Bryn Mawr School in Towson, MD. We were seated in front of these lovely little girls, all dressed in light green jumpers and white tops, and presented with 25 soccer balls, 2 pumps, a big paper check for $205.00, and a large blue envelope sealed with a pretty curled pink ribbon and filled with hand made cards for the troops! We were complimenting the girls on the envelope and telling them how this would remind the soldiers of their little sisters, daughters, etc. And one little one replied "Yes and maybe they can use the ribbon to tie something on their pack!" She was too cute! It was a pleasure to meet these sweet little girls.

Everyone we met at Bryn Mawr was friendly and supportive. Two of the teachers are going to speak with organizations in the Towson area of Baltimore about donating used equipment. One little girl asked if Eric would be receiving all of these soccer balls. We explained that yes, he would, but that many of the soldiers will be handing them out to the children. The students were so attentive. It was a wonderful experience. Below is a note we received from Ms. Talley this afternoon.

Trudy and Virginia,
It was so nice to meet you today. Thank you for coming to the school to pick up the balls. Below is the brief description that should appear on our website with some photos in the next few days:

On May 31st, Bryn Mawr's fourth grade class proudly presented Trudy and Virginia with 25 colorful soccer balls and a check for $205.00. The fourth grade students voted to support the project, "Eric's Goal," among others, using the proceeds from their International Bazaar. The soccer balls are bound for Iraq where they will be distributed to Iraqi children by serviceman.

I'll send the check to you, Trudy, as soon as I receive it. Best of luck, and I hope that Eric stays safe.

Cristin Talley

Thank you again to Mrs. Talley, the 4th grade class, and the staff of Bryn Mawr School, for your generosity and positive comments! You lifted us up with your kindness!