top of page

ARMENIA

CONFLICT BACKGROUND

In the fall of 2020, violence erupted again in the contested region between Armenia and Azerbaijan of Nagorno-Karabakh, known to many in Armenia as Artsakh. A ceasefire had been in place since 1994. As a result of the violence, Azerbaijan regained control of the territory and around 90,000 Armenians were displaced from Artsakh, mostly throughout other regions of Armenia. More than 100 civilians were killed in the conflict. In 2021, in partnership with the Aurora Humanitarian Initiative and Girls of Armenia Leadership Soccer (GOALS), iACT launched soccer academies throughout Armenia.

FACTS

90,000

people were displaced by the Nagorno-Karabakh war in 2020 

(UNSDG)

88%

of those who were displaced were women and children 

(UNSGD)

36,000

Armenians are still

internally displaced.

(Amnesty)

iACT IN ARMENIA

7

 men and women hired as coaches

7

branches operating through 1 Academy

263

boys and girls enrolled in soccer academies

MEET OUR COMMUNITY
Gevorg
Academy Coach, Armenia

Gevorg lives in Artsakh, but is not from there. He fought in the war in 2020 in the contested Artsakh/Nagorno-Karabakh region, surviving a bullet wound to his shoulder, and felt compelled to stay to help. Gevorg has started a league for girls and is dedicated to connecting Artsakh to the world through soccer. He hosts an iACT soccer academy for boys and girls in Artsakh to help them recover from war and feel joy and hope through play. 

“iACT has given me a great chance to fulfill my lifelong dream of working with children in Artsakh, and now I have succeeded in doing that. I am now able to help many children and to transfer my knowledge to them. I help them forget about their daily worries and give them happiness and joy.”

Gevorg.jpg

CAMEROON

CONFLICT BACKGROUND

In 2013, thousands of people were forced to flee the Central African Republic (CAR) due to an outbreak of violence. Ongoing conflict has forced many to remain in neighboring countries. Currently, there are more than 345,000 refugees from CAR living in Cameroon. Basic needs such as food, health, shelter, and water are all primary concerns for the refugee communities, and access to other social, protective, and education services remain severely limited. In 2016, with our partner Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS), we launched Refugees United Soccer Academy in the town of Gado. And in 2019, iACT again partnered with JRS to launch the Little Ripples program in 4 villages in eastern Cameroon.

FACTS

737,925

 Central Africans displaced as refugees due to violence

 (UNHCR)

345,798

Central African refugees living in eastern Cameroon

(UNHCR)

658,265

internally displaced

(UNHCR)

iACT IN CAMEROON

16

community-based pre-schools implementing Little Ripples pedagogy

58

Central African refugee and Cameroonian teachers trained in pedagogy

2,250

Central African refugee and Cameroonian children reached

MEET OUR COMMUNITY
Meet Hadija
Little Ripples Teacher, Cameroon

Hadija is a trained Little Ripples teacher and works in a preschool community-based center in a village in eastern Cameroon where refugees from the Central African Republic have been integrated with the local community. When Hadija became a community-based preschool teacher two years ago, very few refugee children were attending. She explained that now, “Parents see the children of their neighbors and see how they are changing and growing because of preschool. And so parents become more willing. This year, before the school year, many refugee parents were looking for me and asking me when school would begin for their children.”

Hadija.jpeg
CAR3.heic

CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC

CONFLICT BACKGROUND

Nearly one third of the Central African Republic’s population has been displaced by violence and humanitarian crisis. While many have fled across borders, 602,134 people are internally displaced within the country. In the cities of Mbata and Bangui, iACT works alongside Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) to train teachers and soccer coaches. Today there are 5 Little Ripples teachers employed to peer-train teachers and 4 coaches leading a Refugees United Soccer Academy.

FACTS

737,925

Central Africans displaced as refugees due to violence (UNHCR)

47%

of Central African refugees have fled to Cameroon

(UNHCR)

602,134

internally displaced

(UNHCR)

iACT IN THE CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC

88

teachers in Mbata and Bangui trained in Little Ripples pedagogy, with 9,564 children reached

1

Academy in Bangui with 4 coaches, and 18 coaches trained

296

boys and girls participating in RUSA

MEET OUR COMMUNITY
Bienvenu Gérard Wangue
Academy Coach, CAR

“My name is Bienvenu Gérard Wangue, I have been living in Bangui for 28 years. I was born in the North of the Central African Republic precisely in the city of Kabo. I started playing football 26 years ago. I had wanted to become a coach because it was a passion for me, and it is even a dream for me. I would like the world to know that the Central African Republic is not a country of war, on the contrary a country of peace and hospitality where these children have a lot of talent and love to learn football, among other things, which unites them.”

bienvenu.jpg

CHAD

CONFLICT BACKGROUND

The Darfur genocide began in 2003, killing an estimated 400,000 individuals and displacing more than 3 million. Today, more than 390,000 Darfuri refugees are living in 12 camps in eastern Chad with limited access to critical services. Building on the need for programs in Chad that address trauma and promote education, health, peacebuilding, and social integration, iACT launched Little Ripples in Chad in 2013. iACT worked directly with Darfuri refugee communities there to develop the Little Ripples program and the Refugees United Soccer Academy, and continues to work directly with these same communities to implement these programs. iACT works in collaboration with its partner the Jesuit Refugee Service in Chad.

FACTS

400,000

estimated people killed in the Darfur genocide 

(Jewish World Watch)

3,000,000

people displaced by the Darfur genocide

(Jewish World Watch)

392,168

Darfuri refugees living in eastern Chad

(UNHCR)

iACT IN CHAD

32

home-based centers and 6 Little Ripples classrooms currently operating in Chad, with 4,690 children reached to date

9,000

meals served to Little Ripples students in Chad per week

11,768

girls and boys currently enrolled in RUSA in Chad

MEET OUR COMMUNITY
Leila
Little Ripples Teacher, Chad

Leila is 23 years old and is a Little Ripples Teacher in refugee camp Mile. She has spent the majority of her life in a camp where few employment opportunities exist for women. In February 2018, she became a Little Ripples teacher and now helps lead the program in her community. 

Leila LR.jpeg

MEXICO

CONFLICT BACKGROUND

There are currently 947,248 people considered populations of concern in Mexico, 31% of which are asylum-seekers, 19% refugees, and 30% internally displaced. Mexico also bears the impact of insufficient resources and America’s constantly shifting immigration policies. Millions of people have come to the border in search of asylum from violence in Mexico and the Northern Triangle – El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala. In recent years, asylum seekers have also come from countries such as Cuba, Venezuela, Colombia, and Haiti. In early 2023, iACT launched Refugees United Soccer Academy in Reynosa with four new coaches and one project coordinator, who will lead the program for refugee and migrant children at the shelter Senda de Vida 1. The communities at the shelter are on the move, with new children coming and going from the program regularly. The Reynosa Academy was launched in partnership with The Sidewalk School, and funded by Angel City FC.

iACT IN MEXICO

4

men and women hired as coaches

1

academy launched

45

45-55 girls and boys on average attend the soccer academy each week

FACTS

289,180

People seeking asylum currently live in Mexico.

181,289

Refugees currently live in Mexico.

286,787

People are internally displaced within Mexico, 30% of which are children.  (UNHCR)

MEET OUR COMMUNITY
Abraham
RUSA Coach, Mexico

"My hope is that the academy will be extended in the future to the other immigration centers in Reynosa and why not, to other cities, and thus be able to help more children who are going through stress and different health problems and teach about respect, unity, equality and health through sport. My hope is to help as many people as possible."

Abraham.jpg

TANZANIA

CONFLICT BACKGROUND

In April 2015, political violence and insecurity forced over 400,000 Burundians to flee to neighboring countries. Currently, 127,333 Burundian refugees are residing in three refugee camps in the Kigoma region of Tanzania. Many young Burundian refugee children are out of school and in need of quality early childhood care and development support. In partnership with Plan International Tanzania, iACT launched the Little Ripples program in the Nduta and Mtendeli refugee camps in western Tanzania to support these children and ensure they can exercise their right to education and healthy development.

FACTS

333,700

Burundians displaced as refugees due to violence (UNHCR)

127,333

Burundian refugees living in western Tanzania

(UNHCR)

140,000+

Burundian refugee children out-of-school in Tanzania

(Camp enrollment figures)

iACT IN TANZANIA

1

RUSA is being implemented in refugee camp Nduta

40

40 teachers trained in Little Ripples pedagogy

6,841

children reached with early childhood education

1,429

children reached through RUSA

MEET OUR COMMUNITY
Adeline

Adeline lives in Nduta refugee camp with her husband and four children. She is an early childhood development teacher with Plan International Tanzania and participated in Little Ripples Teacher Training. “From the Little Ripples training, I was happy to get information on how to teach and take care of young children. Before I was working in primary school. Now I know the skills for young children and how to teach with peace and through playing.”

Adeline.jpeg
bottom of page