Refugees and football – Who is doing what and where

http://www.farenet.org/campaigns/refugees-football-database/

The greatest movement of people seeking refuge in Europe since the second world war is taking place across the continent. The total numbers of people escaping war and poverty by seeking a new home in Europe will be in excess of 1 million people.

The challenges these numbers present are manifold with the re-settlement of individuals and families a priority, alongside the need to ensure their longer-term inclusion into society.

Fare believes that sport can play a role in helping to meet some of the challenges faced by new arrivals and ensure the safe integration of individuals into communities.

Activists and volunteers across Europe have been involved in supporting refugees over recent months. One of the ways of doing so has been through the simple act of offering space and friendship to participate in football through grassroots clubs to help newcomers integrate.

Fare has created a database of grassroots organisations, teams and football clubs that are actively welcoming refugees or organising training sessions and other initiatives to help refugees find a place.

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sports is actually closely linked to culture - one could even claim it is (about) culture. They are seperatedly addressed though often, probably for good reasons too. Yet interesting to keep in mind the commonalities: i.e. the roots of why sports or culture for that matter are "safe havens"where people can negotiate living together (via playing together, working together, creating together, celebrating together, but also the clever interaction from community or team goals (literally) with the individual skills etc).


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Vivian, this is exactly why I posted this kind of content (or other related to cultural practices such as cooking). We described this project as time/space to think about the interrelationships between culture and refuge, and I believe it'd be helpful to define not only what refuge means but also what culture means to us in this context. I assume you already started doing that by using the word "together". Or, as Stuart Hall defined culture: "shared meanings"... the way people (we together) make sense of their/our realities. Something that probably has to do with a lifestyle. If we ask what Europe is about we are thinking about what kind of things I/we usually do that make me/us feel European... and this way, we will be able to uncover what this really means, right? In this sense, the question Charlie has asked above is so relevant and linked to the issue of why sports and culture are often separated...

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funny how some football clubs are super commercial businesses, while others are more like social movements. you don't get such differences in arts organisations, or perhaps they're just harder to see...

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I don't know Charles. Some arts organisations are definitely more akin to super commerical businesses than social movements - the pricec of the commodification of art maybe. Sports and culture have many common links at a grassroots level, deeply embedded in communities and traditional ways out for many improvished kids - once. Now, both seem to be going more in the direction of being bastions of the establishment and cutting off opportunities that once existed so I am pleased to see that my cynicism may be misplaced for once :)

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