Vancouver United Football Club (VanU) is a relatively new club with a long history. VanU was founded in 2011 as a result of the joining of three long standing west side Vancouver clubs that go back to the late 1950s - Dunbar Soccer Association, Kerrisdale Soccer Society, and Point Grey Soccer Association. VanU inherited from these founding clubs a long tradition of strongly engaged players and teams, community involvement, supportive families, and a large number of volunteers.
VanU is one of the largest soccer clubs in the Lower Mainland with over 2600 boys and girls from the ages of three to 17 playing at the U4 to U18 levels. The club also hosts teams for women and men playing in their respective adult leagues. While most of the players are from the westside of Vancouver, there are many players from throughout the Vancouver area.
Practices and home games use artificial turf fields at UBC, Jericho, South Memorial, Trillium, and Point Grey and UHill Secondary Schools; grass and all-weather fields at numerous local elementary schools; and various grass Vancouver Park Board fields.
VanU has over 600 volunteers as team coaches and managers, activity coordinators, and Board members who help to ensure our players and families have a positive and memorable experience in the soccer community.
The club mantra - GAME. CLUB. COMMUNITY. - reflects our desire that players of all ages, experience, and talent have an opportunity to play the GAME; the CLUB is seen to be strong and vibrant, with the players and families having a positive experience; and the club will work with and within the COMMUNITY in various ways to make a positive contribution.
The club has different programs for the various age groups:
ACTIVE START (U4-U8)
VanU's philosophy for the Active Start Program is to develop PASSION FOR THE GAME and LOVE OF THE BALL. This program is based on the Canadian Soccer Association Long Term Player Development Pathway. The focus is on fun, physical literacy (learning fundamental movement skills), and soccer skill development. This is a parent-engagement program, so parents actively participate in all aspects.
At this level, players transition into a new format, playing 6-aside on slightly larger fields compared to Active Start. There is one practice during the week and a game on the weekend.
Divisional soccer includes the U11 to U18 age groups. The U11–U12 teams play 8-aside games on half fields, and the U13–U18 play 11-aside on full fields. Formal tiering starts for Divisional teams based on a structured evaluation process for those players wanting to play at a more competitive level. Whereas the Active Start and House games are all in-house played in the local community, Divisional teams can travel much further for games.
The VanU Academy is the core of our club's training and development, providing a wide range of support to club players, teams, coaches and referees. Support includes: programs geared to competitive players and teams; pro-coaching support to teams; spring/summer camps for all levels of play; and volunteer and referee training and development programs.
CLUB BRANDING and LOGO
VanU’s new identity was based on a brand visioning process in 2010/11 that engaged a wide spectrum of participants representing the founding clubs of Dunbar Soccer Association, Kerrisdale Soccer Society, and Point Grey Soccer Association. The branding process outcomes represented the desire of the VanU’s membership to truly impact the lives of children and youth through the positive and character building aspects of playing sport in general, and soccer in particular.
The following statements reflect VanU fundamental qualities and direction:
Our VISION: A community-based soccer development system built of best-of-class programs for players, coaches and referees.
Our MISSION: To create new levels of community participation, activity and spirit on the strength of the most inclusive club and comprehensive programs for players, coaches, officials and families.
CLUB QUALITIES: Fun, inclusive, progressive, proud and competitive.
CLUB CHARACTERISTICS: Bold soccer development, a true club environment and a dynamic collaborative organization.
PLAYER-CENTERED VALUES: Sportsmanship, team play and friendship.
The club logo’s inclusion of a bridge is to reflect the large membership spanning not only the original core neighbourhoods of Dunbar, Kerrisdale and Point Grey, but also encompasses other areas of Vancouver from where our players reside, including Kitsilano, Fairview Slopes, Granville Island, the West Broadway corridor, other parts for residential Vancouver, and in to downtown Vancouver communities.
INFORMATION ON THE FOUNDING CLUBS
• Dunbar Soccer Association
• Kerrisdale Soccer Society
• Point Grey Soccer Association