National Soccer Coaches Association Promotes LGBT Advocacy and Education

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New Instructional Online Course Helps Educate Coaches on LGBT Diversity and Inclusion

“Understanding how others can be different is essential and we want to help encourage the most respectful, inclusive environments possible across all of soccer.”

The National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) today released a new interactive online mini-course developed to help educate coaches about the inclusion and support of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender athletes. The 10-minute course titled ‘LGBT: Diversity and Inclusion’ is available now as a free public service at with an NSCAA Diploma upon completion.

The NSCAA’s LGBT and Allies Member Community developed the course in partnership with Athlete Ally, a national nonprofit organization that provides public awareness campaigns, educational programming and other resources to foster inclusive sports communities. The course provides an overview of what it can mean to be LGBT, along with guidance for working with LGBT players and colleagues. The online course describes many ways for coaches to be allies with the LGBT community.

“Camaraderie, compassion, and collaboration are key to a successful team in any sport,” said Lynn Berling-Manuel, Chief Executive Officer at the NSCAA. “Understanding how others can be different is essential and we want to help encourage the most respectful, inclusive environments possible across all of soccer.”

A recent report from the Fenway Institute, noted in the course, highlighted the unhealthy impact of bullying on LGBT youth.

  • 71.3% of students hear homophobic remarks often or frequently.
  • 8 out of 10 students have been verbally harassed.
  • 4 out of 10 students have been physically harassed.
  • Significantly increased risk of smoking, dating violence and suicide attempts.

“Education is such a critical part to understanding the LGBT community,” said Dan Woog, chair of the NSCAA’s LGBT and Allies coaching community and former NSCAA Boys Youth Coach of the Year from Westport, Conn. who played a key role in the development of the course. “It’s simply a change in your mindset and the way you approach others. The more prepared you are, the better coach you will be.”

For more information or to learn more about the NSCAA’s LGBT Soccer Coaches and Allies Community, visit

About the NSCAA
Celebrating its 75th Anniversary in 2016, the National Soccer Coaches Association of America was founded in 1941 and is based in Kansas City, Mo. It is a non-profit organization with the mission of advocating for, educating and serving soccer coaches to encourage excellence and elevate soccer in America.

The NSCAA is the world’s largest soccer coaches’ organization with members at every level of the game from professional and college to high school and youth. Benefits of membership are wide ranging including a national coaching education program, professional development resources, $1 million of general liability insurance, annual recognition for players and staff with All-America and Staff of the Year awards, the annual NSCAA Convention, networking and mentor opportunities, Soccer Journal magazine and more. To learn more, visit

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