Marisa with Very Important Player Colin
Marisa Leib-Neri is one of the founding volunteers of our region’s VIP program. Marisa joined in 2007, when she was in sixth grade, as a part of her Bat-Mitzvah project. When asked what compelled her to continue her service work long after, Marisa says, “I love the goals of the program and the amazing kids that come to play soccer every Saturday.”
Over the years, Marisa has been a volunteer “buddy” to a range of players, assistant coach, and trouble-shooter. As a veteran volunteer, she is familiar with the players and all aspects of the program. She has offered insightful advice on how to improve the program and has helped with administrative details such as attendance and uniform distribution.
Marisa is graduating from Lincoln Park High School's International Baccalaureate program. When asked to reflect upon her many years with VIP, Marisa thoughtfully shared the following: “I have learned many great things from working with children with special needs. I have learned patience and that each child learns at their own pace and in their own way. I have learned that communication can come in many forms and that a lot of the time it isn't through talking that kids learn the best, but rather through demonstration, high fives, and reassurance.”
Marisa will be attending Grinnell College next year. We will sorely miss her. Congratulations, Marisa!