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How Teqball can help with forced displacement

Copyrights: FITEQ

How Teqball can help with forced displacement

The International Teqball Federation, FITEQ, has been at the forefront of supporting refugees dealing with forced displacement since 2018.

FITEQ recognises that, as an International Federation, it has an important role to play in social responsibility and acknowledging issues such as the war in Ukraine and forced displacement. FITEQ believes that sport for development is an effective way to help achieve larger developmental goals. 

In April 2018, FITEQ signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Peace and Sport at the Zaatari Refugee Camp in Jordan, the world’s largest camp for Syrian refugees. This was FITEQ’S flagship programme in their CSR and sports diplomacy portfolio.

Live Together

The MoU confirmed both organisations’ intention to join forces in promoting Teqball as a tool for social development and equality and signed a five-year deal with Peace and Sport’s Live Together programme, launched to enhance social cohesion among refugees.

Gergely Murányi, FITEQ’s Head of Diplomatic Relations and CSR, visited all the refugee camps with FITEQ coaches. He said, “FITEQ’s ongoing support of forcibly displaced persons highlights the importance of sport-based educational programmes which can provide an escape for the younger generation from everyday problems and difficulties. These programmes can support the prevention of violent extremism, while giving the participants a feeling of belongingness.”

As part of the Peace and Sport’s Live Together programme, children in the Zaatari camp have had access to Teqball training sessions, delivered through a ‘train-the-trainer’ concept. Train-the-trainer ensures long-term legacy by ensuring coaches in the camp can continue to provide opportunities in the sport. FITEQ’s legacy included the donation of sports equipment, jerseys, and hijabs to ensure that teqball is accessible for everyone in Zaatari. 

Gergely added, “The aim of the programme is to engage young people in sporting activities to help provide an escape from the challenges they face on a day-to-day basis. At the same time, we want to teach them transferrable skills and key values such as teamwork, inclusivity, and integrity. The situations these people are in are desperately sad, and everyone in the Teqball family should make it a priority to show solidarity with refugees all around the world.”

Table of Peace

Building on the success of the long-standing partnership with Peace and Sport, FITEQ launched a dedicated support programme for refugees under the banner of Table of Peace on 21 February 2021 in Djibouti.

Under this programme, Teqball tables are donated to post-conflict and disadvantaged communities to engage young people. On this occasion, FITEQ donated three tables to the camp.

In total, FITEQ has visited Zaatari on three occasions to further develop the Table of Peace programme. Daniel Gyurta, an IOC Member and former Olympic gold medal-winning swimmer from Hungary, was part of the FITEQ delegation in Zaatari. He views his work as part of his responsibility to do what he can to support young people in refugee camps.

He said, “Sport has the power to bring people together, inspire hope and also raise awareness about the refugee crisis.” In Zaatari, his visit gave him first-hand experience of just how much joy the Live Together programme brings, and how sports like Teqball not only connect these young people and keep them active but also instil values that will serve them throughout their lives. 

Gergely Murányi believes FITEQ’s ongoing work in the Zaatari refugee camp and their cooperation with Peace and Sport is hugely important in ensuring that Teqball can make a meaningful contribution to improving the lives of young refugees. He said, “It enables them to promote the power of sport in tackling violent extremism, in line with the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism Sports programme. FITEQ believes sport should be accessible for all, which is why we always seek to increase participation and provide opportunities for the most vulnerable people in society.”

Since the launch of the Table of Peace programme, FITEQ has been working alongside national federations, as well as governments and NGOs, to use teqball to build a better and brighter future.

In August 2022, in collaboration with Peace and Sport and the Embassy of Hungary in Amman, Jordan, FITEQ hosted another two-day training session for young refugees in the Zaatari refugee camp.

President and Founder of Peace and Sport, Joël Bouzou who was present said, “With its in-depth knowledge of sport and its values, FITEQ is an essential ally in maximising the impact of our field programmes. Our five-year successful collaboration within the Live Together programme has demonstrated that sport is a strong tool to reconcile, bring a sense of normality, and support social inclusion programmes for refugees. The regular practice of sports, including Teqball, has been an essential outlet for young people dealing with the anxiety caused by displacement and life in the close quarters of a camp. Sport has brought hope, strengthened the children’s self-esteem, and increased their confidence with community members. FITEQ plays a key role in empowering young refugees through its sport.”

FITEQ is a member of the Sport for Refugees Coalition, an initiative co-led by the Olympic Refuge Foundation, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), and the SCORT Foundation. Supporting refugees is a core pillar of FITEQ’s global CSR strategy, with FITEQ aiming is to use Teqball and Para Teqball to provide hope to refugees around the world and promote the Olympic values amongst disaffected and displaced communities.

Currently, FITEQ is sponsoring the passport process for refugee athletes to enable their Teqball coach, Ibrahim Hariri, to travel and support the training of Arabic-speaking athletes. 

FITEQ also continues to work closely with Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Hungary on a range of other humanitarian projects, through the two parties’ strategic partnership.

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News

Author

Andria Allan

Published

Monday, November 21, 2022 - 23:21