Behind every champion is a great coach supporting him to achieve his very best. That is who Coach Leo is to our children. Coach Leo Arnaiz is known as a pastor and as a seasoned coach behind our country’s youth national teams for football and basketball. He has been serving faithfully at Vision of Hope for the past five years and is currently heading our sports program. Sharing his love for Christ and his passion for sports, he has been walking (literally) alongside the boys from our Homecare – training and improving their skills through the program, as well as helping with character building and developing passion, discipline and integrity by ministering to them. Teaching our boys to work hard even beyond the football field, he has been well-known and well-love for his expression, “Character is who you are.”
For Coach Leo, winning in life is more important than winning on the football field. But, if God will permit us to win both, we can say that we have accomplished much more than what is intended for us. Unlike other football teams, our team is composed of young, energetic, active boys who were former street dwellers and used the street as their playground. Despite growing up without rules and discipline, our boys have now become real athletes who possess technical skills and character in and outside the game. Rigid practice and training through the years have shaped them to become boys who work hard and play hard. In the past, we have joined competitions, won awards and lost badly. These experiences served as teaching moments for the boys to realize how sports can play a significant part in their lives. Some of our college students were blessed with scholarships and became varsity players that represented their universities in different football meets.
Just last Summer, we joined the NCRFA YOUTH LEAGUE at Alabang Country Club. We competed against different schools and organization from the private sector. After going through a series of competitions, we were able to get 3rd place. A player of ours even awarded as the best striker of the league! What an honor it was for the Visions of Hope Team to have played and brought glory to God through the use of the gifts He had entrusted us.
We are really proud and blessed to have witnessed how our sports program, along with the commitment of our coaches, have transformed our children, bringing out the best in them. After all, raising champions is all about teaching them to play well in real life and not just in games or sports.