San Jose Earthquakes defender Jason Hernandez and midfielder Omar Jasseh visited O.B. Whaley Elementary on Wednesday afternoon in San Jose as a part of the Amway Kicks for Kids program. The Amway Kicks for Kids program, in its second year, helps teach local youth about the importance of a healthy diet and an active lifestyle.
The students greeted the defender and rookie midfielder with cheers and applause as they took their place in front of the crowd of 300 children who attended the assembly.
Hernandez and Jasseh stressed the impact a healthy diet and active lifestyle have had on their lives. Hernandez told the children how a healthy diet helped him to have the energy to play soccer at a competitive level. He also explained the importance of being active and getting enough rest to perform at your best. Hernandez and Jasseh each gave the children examples of nutritious foods and activities to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Jasseh shared stories from his upbringing in Africa, and all of the stops so far in the 17-year-old’s young career, which has included time with several youth teams in England.
After they finished speaking, Hernandez and Jasseh selected a group of students to join them in the center of the group for a juggling contest. The best performance of the day came from a student who juggled 49 times, and then Jasseh tried to top it, and did successfully, showing off his best tricks with the ball.
To conclude the afternoon, Hernandez and Jasseh signed autographs and posed for photographs with the children. Earthquakes staff passed out t-shirts and two tickets to the Quakes match versus FC Dallas on Sept. 11 at Buck Shaw Stadium at 7 p.m. to all the children.
The Earthquakes and Amway teamed up to create the Amway Kicks for Kids program in 2009. Throughout the 2010 season Earthquakes players will visit 15 schools or community centers in the Bay Area to discuss the importance of being active and living a healthy lifestyle.