On one level, the book "Outcasts United" is a feel good story about the transformational power of sports programs for youth. But, this year's Illinois Wesleyan University Convocation Speaker Warren Saint John is more ambitious than that. He relays the sociology of a town in Georgia used as a refugee resettlement area. WGLT's Charlie Schlenker has more with Saint John and an audience of IWU faculty and students.
Youth Soccer Coach Luma has tough rules for her team in Georgia, including being on time to practice and being penalized games for missing practice. She also found that her short hair rules as objectionable as many kids find them, do help prevent gang affiliation, particularly among former child soldiers from Liberia, whose harsh training and english speaking skills make them prime recruits for drug gangs in the region.
Reporter and writer Warren Saint John is the author of "Outcasts United: An American Town, a Refugee Team, and One Woman's Quest to Make a Difference." WGLT's Charlie Schlenker recorded the IWU question and answer session with Saint John including this observation about immigrant family cultures.
Hear more from Saint John on his relationships with soccer team members,
Saint John's approach to writing
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