What a special weekend.
I felt so many emotions watching the guys from the camp giving their everything at The Liberté Cup yesterday. Not just physically but emotionally too..they poured their hearts into those games and it showed. When they won, the ultimate joy was evident, as if nothing else mattered, they celebrated as if they didn’t have a care in the world. And when they lost…it broke my heart, knowing that they have suffered their fair share of loss…but they did so graciously. They did it together, as a team, as brothers.
And when they sung the Kurdish national anthem…fuck…that got me…their pride and strength resounded through the stadium.
It was all round great for everyone involved. It was so refreshing to see the guys as a group of guys…playing football…wearing a kit…without the label of ‘refugee’, outside of the environment of a refugee camp.
That’s still where they went back to at the end of the day though… Back to the camp. Back to reality. Some of them limping from a naughty tackle, their muscles aching, but all of them carrying the internal, emotional scars of experiencing war and persecution, of fleeing their homes in the hope of finding safety.
As I watched, I promised myself again that we will keep doing everything in our power to support them in this dream.