CHICAGO (April 14, 2014) – Former U.S. Women’s National Team goalkeeper Mary Harvey and defender Danielle Slaton traveled to Jordan on April 12 as part of the U.S. State Department’s Empowering Women and Girls Through Sports Initiative.
The program is run through the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) in cooperation with U.S. Soccer and the U.S. Embassy Amman. While in the country, Harvey and Slaton will lead a series of soccer clinics, workshops, and discussions in Amman, Zarqa, Mafraq and Ramtha through April 18. The program will address women and girls empowerment, leadership, entrepreneurship, and healthy-living. Participants will include young women and emerging leaders; including youth soccer club members, parents, and refugee communities in the country’s North.
Slaton, a fixture on the U.S. National Team from 2000-05, was a member of the 2000 Olympic team in Sydney, and the 2003 World Cup team. Jordan marks her third tour as a State Department Sports Envoy.
Harvey, a goalkeeper for the U.S. Women’s World Cup team that won the 1991 FIFA Women’s World Cup and the 1996 Olympic gold medal, was the first woman to serve as FIFA’s Director of Development. She later served as Chief Operating Officer of Women’s Professional Soccer. Harvey has participated in several programs as a State Department Sports Envoy.
Through its sports diplomacy programming, ECA encourages the involvement of traditionally underrepresented audiences. Since 2003, ECA has brought nearly 1,000 athletes from more than 60 countries to the United States to participate in sports visitor programs while sending over 220 U.S. athletes to more than 50 countries on sports envoy programs.