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Can a sport change lives? Our documentary on homeless women competing in soccer aims to answer just that.
Can a sport change lives? Our documentary on homeless women competing in soccer aims to answer just that.
216 backers pledged $30,082 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$30,082

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GOOOOOAL! WE MADE IT!

Thanks to an entire community that supported us.

We could certainly use more donations – they will cover costs such as the poster, the website, outreach, etc. Contact us at Teddybearfilms@earthlink.net or visit www.teddybearfilms.com.

Minneapolis team with Maria celebrating winning the Street Soccer USA Cup.
Minneapolis team with Maria celebrating winning the Street Soccer USA Cup.

 Our Film

GOAL! The Incredible Journey follows the trip of five women who were selected to represent the United States at the 2013 Homeless World Cup. Through their story we explore how soccer can help people take control of their lives.

When I first heard about the Homeless World Cup I was stunned. I am a lifelong soccer fan, yet I’ve never heard about this annual event that brings together homeless soccer players from 50 countries around the world. You probably haven’t either.

Here was a new, creative approach to battling homelessness. I was intrigued. Could it really work?

As I got to know some of the U.S. teams, I saw how the irresistible power of a sport could be channeled toward coaching not only soccer, but also life skills. I quickly came upon some amazing life stories, so I knew there was a good film waiting to be made.

I started production right away in order to get footage of the women in their home cities long before they were selected to represent the U.S. at the Homeless World Cup. This took me to teams all over the country: from Charlotte to Seattle, from New York, through Chicago, St. Louis and Minneapolis, back home to San Francisco. I needed to film all the players nominated to the national team, because I couldn’t know yet who would make the final cut.

Find out more about the “stars” of the film, and read the film’s synopsis, at our FAQ page.

The Rewards

The Back story

The homeless population in some parts of the U.S. is at its highest since the Great Depression. Over 1.5 million children nationwide are currently homeless. With budget cuts and rising housing costs, the need to explore new solutions is more urgent than ever. One such innovative program is harnessing the transformative power of sports to change lives. Street Soccer USA has teams in 18 cities, using the passion for soccer to connect players to jobs, education and housing opportunities.

Despite Street Soccer USA’s 75% success rate, the program has so far attracted little attention. Our film aims to change that. 

Our Goal

Our goal with GOAL! is to make an inspiring, uplifting film that will encourage communities and individuals to look at innovative approaches to helping the local homeless population, and to consider the power of sports to make positive social change. We intend to make a film that will be aired on television, screened in film festivals and streamed on-line. In addition to these traditional venues, we will make the film available for community groups and activists on issues of economic justice and homelessness.

How You Can Help

We are asking you to come in to support the film’s completion stages. We need to raise $30,000, the minimum amount it will cost to finish. We’re almost done the filming, and here is what this money will buy:

  • 3 final days of production
  • Editing
  • Music rights
  • Audio mix, titles and miscellaneous post-production tasks needed to complete the film

To express our appreciation, we have assembled a great selection of gifts, including donations from the San Francisco-based Sports Basement and Senda Athletics.

Note: we estimate the film to be completed by early summer 2015. The film (digital and DVD versions) will be delivered as soon as possible after completion. Delivery dates in the Rewards section refer to all other gifts.

Tell everyone that you're now a part of our project, and that you'd like them to help, too! Be sure to let them know that we can be found on Facebook and Twitter. And remember: every little bit helps.

What Happens If We Don’t Reach Our Goal?

If we don't raise our goal, we don't receive any donations. The amount you pledge will not actually make it to us until our final goal is reached and the funding deadline has passed. We want to succeed, so please spread the word! Everything helps!

Who We Are

Micha X. Peled, the film’s director and producer, is an award-winning indie documentary filmmaker. See reels of his previous work here.

Micha is one of the very few emigrants to the U.S. who have arrived in this country by hitchhiking. But that was long ago. Years later: “After the L.A. Times wrote about my first work, ‘a hell of a great film,’ I quit my day job and never looked back."

Micha X. Peled
Micha X. Peled

David Kempa is a journalist in Sacramento, CA, writing with a particular interest in poverty and social justice issues.

Winner of a 2010 Robert F Kennedy Award for Journalism for his immigration work in southern Mexico, Kempa has spent most of his career making sure the less fortunate get their stories told.

Dave Kempa
Dave Kempa

Risks and challenges

While film projects are always vulnerable to unpredictable turns of events, this project is almost on its home stretch. With 95% of the filming completed, the footage logged and assembled, the main hurdle remaining is the lack of funding. If we are successful at raising our target amount, we should be able to hire the professional crew and services required to bring the film out to the world. All of Micha Peled's six documentaries have aired on PBS. We expect a similar route for this film.

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Support this project

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    A video 'thank you' from Micha, the filmmaker, and a 'hat's off' mention in our social media. You are the reason we want to make this film!

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    13 backers
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    [NOTE: DELIVERY OF THE FILM ITSELF WILL BE SUMMER 2015] Digital VIEWING (streaming) of the completed film, available for a limited period upon release. We'll also put your name on our website’s Wall of Donors!

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    55 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    A digital DOWNLOAD (it's yours to watch whenever you want!) of the completed film, an autographed official film postcard, and your name on our website's Wall of Donors.

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    46 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    The complete GOAL! PACKAGE: The $50 reward PLUS an autographed DVD of the completed film. In addition (and EXCLUSIVE to this $100 tier), an official Street Soccer USA t-shirt.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    GOAL! PACKAGE, PLUS an official match soccer ball from Senda Athletics, a Fair Trade company (and the official ball of Street Soccer USA!).

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    3 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    PREMIUM PACKAGE: The GOAL! PACKAGE, PLUS the complete 3-DVD set of of the multi-award winning Globalization Trilogy, produced and directed by Micha Peled over a ten-year period (see http://ow.ly/wxPOe)

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    10 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $600 or more About $600

    The PREMIUM PACKAGE, PLUS a new bag courtesy of Sports Basement: EITHER a Timbuk2 messenger bag OR a Camelbak mule backpack.

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    2 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    The PREMIUM PACKAGE, PLUS a sumptuous lunch with filmmaker Micha Peled or a Street Soccer USA coach, and the opportunity to play with the homeless street soccer team near you.

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    3 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    The PREMIUM PACKAGE, PLUS Producer credits in the film and bring the film to your city! The rights to one public screening (you organize - can be a fundraiser) with the director doing Q & A on Skype.

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    1 backer
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    PREMIUM PACKAGE, PLUS Executive Producer credits in the film and bring the film to your city! The rights to one public screening (you organize - can be a fundraiser) with the director doing Q & A in person.

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Funding period

- (30 days)