Refugees United Soccer Academy
The Refugees United Soccer Academy (Academy) is a place for refugee girls and boys ages 6 to 18 to learn about teamwork, leadership, and peacebuilding, all while improving soccer skills.
The Academy was co-created with refugee communities and offers children, whose families have been displaced by extreme violence, a safe space to play, heal, and be empowered. iACT trains and employs two male and two female refugees to serve as the leaders and coaches of each Academy. Each week, the coaches lead children in mindfulness exercises, warm-ups, skills and drills activities, scrimmages, and team-building exercises. Ultimately, their goal is to provide a safe place for refugee children to learn soccer, lead, play, grow, and be children. The Academy also serves as a way to connect refugee children and youth with soccer players and clubs across the U.S. and globally.
Learn more about the training and the certification of completion here.
We work hand-in-hand with refugees to provide food, create jobs, build preschools and establish youth soccer academies in camps around the world. It’s for refugees, led by refugees.
Only with the help of generous supporters like you, alongside the UEFA Foundation For Children, will we be able to support 8,180 refugee boys and girls in this project.
CHAD (DARFUR CRISIS)
RUSA-Darfur Academies currently operating in Chad
Darfuri refugee coaches trained
TANZANIA (BURUNDI CRISIS)
Burundian refugee children out-of-school in Tanzania (Camp enrollment figures)
RUSA-CAR Academy currently operating in Cameroon
Central African coaches trained
Central African refugee children reached so far
CAMEROON (CAR CRISIS)
NEWS & RESOURCES
BBC Newsnight's Jeremy Paxman outlines the background to the CAR crisis in two minutes
CAR Refugees Sing for Peace at Camp in Cameroon
Toward the end of January, iACT’s program associate Julia and I traveled to Chad to connect with our teammates living in the Darfuri refugee camps located in the eastern part of the country. We were there for a couple weeks, and the camps we stopped in were Am Nabak, Touloum, Iridimi, Djabal, and Goz Amer. We refer to this trip as “iACT33” because members of the iACT family, starting with our founder Gabriel Stauring, have now gone to Chad 33 times. Gabriel’s first trip was in 2005, and Katie-Jay later joined him for several visits.
By the afternoon, the consensus was encapsulated by what one humanitarian worker in Bangui told us, “This is CAR. It is always high risk.”
The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals “are a universal call to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.” iACT’s programs may not have been borne out of an intentional response to any of the “UN SDGs,” as...