TEDx Geneva: Claude Marshall — Sports: Giving refugee youth their lost childhood [en]

Claude Marshall — Sports: Giving refugee youth their lost childhood

Refugees. In a camp, almost all they need to stay alive. 80% of refugees are women and children.

First thing Claude did for UNHCR was see if corporations would support small projects. He was told to get money for sports for kids in camps. There is nothing for kids in camps when they get there.

First project was in Kenya, just south of Sudan, 1000 people in the camp. Context: 3 fighting groups in Sudan who all wanted the same ground.

Traumatized girls sitting around and not talking, whereas the boys get the sports programme and equipment. => sports programme for girls!

What does this programme do for them?

  • they laugh
  • they cooperate
  • it’s healthy
  • they pass the time

Also used team sport to make them go to school, by making school a requirement. Attendance raised by 80%. Importance of education for women.

Uganda has four fifths (?) of the world refugees. 10 camps. In one camp, established a football league. Throwing a ball into a camp is not a sports programme — so got an organisation to help set things up. Initially, very distrustful of themselves, and looking upon the other as an ennemy rather than an opponent. They learnt cooperation, rules, listening to the referee. Structure in their lives. School of life: winning is no big deal, and losing is not the end of the world.

Use sports to get the youth together and seize the occasion to teach them better behaviour (lots of violence etc in camps).

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