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A chance to play is the catalyst for social integration in Cameroon

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A chance to play is the catalyst for social integration in Cameroon

The Sport and Cooperation Network is strengthening local capacities through the construction of sports facilities and a primary school, as well as training young girls and boys in an attempt to foster social integration among locals and refugees in eastern Cameroon.

Refugee population

Cameroon hosts over 100,000 refugees from neighbouring countries. It is thought that over 91,000 come from neighbouring Central African Republic, which has endured severe violence and insurgency attacks.

A chance to play
Thanks to funding from the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development (AECID), Sport and Cooperation Network (Red Deporte y Cooperación) has been able to help facilitate the integration of refugees into the host communities.

In this region it isn’t common for schools to have sports facilities, that’s why they’re very excited about the arrival of these constructions”, explains the project coordinator in Cameroon.

In a country where football is considered a national sport, but where few even have access to a ball, providing sports fields and equipment can have a very positive impact. “Once they have a place to play, the kids will forget, even if for a moment, about their problems and their differences”.

Strengthening local capacities
The project also aims to strengthen local capacities by training young girls and boys as community leaders to pass on key messages about health and facilitate sporting activities.

Catalyst for social well-being
Leisure activities, especially sports, are a catalyst for integration and social well-being. That’s why, once the constructions are finished, Sport and Cooperation Network will also organise activities, tournaments and competitions, with the aim to encourage self-esteem and collaboration between the local community and the refugees.

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Article type

News

Author

Tom Vahid

Published

Sunday, March 10, 2013 - 23:00