AUSTIN (KXAN) — On Monday, several Austin FC players visited Leukemia & Lymphoma Society pediatric cancer patients and their families at St. David’s Children’s Hospital.

The team hosted a private meet and greet at the hospital, throwing a pizza party for the kids and their families and gifting pajama gift bags. With just one win or draw away from getting a spot in the Major League Soccer playoffs, Austin FC players took the time to visit the community to leave an impact. 

For mother Wendy Saucedea, this visit meant a lot to her young boy recovering from cancer. In a statement, she said, “it means everything to see him be happy, because he had such a rough four or five months of that chemo, and anything that we can do to help make him happy and to keep him his attitude and emotions up is an amazing thing for him.”

Goalkeeper Brad Stuver and midfielder Felipe Martins were two team players who made an appearance, taking pictures, signing autographs and getting the opportunity to tell their stories and learn about the children.

“I think all of us can remember the days when we were little and watched soccer growing up… so to be in a position now to bring the next generation up and give them people to look up to, people to see playing their dream. It’s a great responsibility,” Stuver said.

The visit was part of Austin FC’s partnership with MLS’ “Kick Childhood Cancer” campaign. This year is the ninth annual campaign that aims to raise cancer awareness and fundraise for childhood cancer research.

For more information on Kick Childhood Cancer or other MLS WORKS initiatives, visit MLSsoccer.com/mlsworks.