FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
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Refugee Camp Djabal, Eastern Chad and Hermosa Beach, CA – May 15, 2014 – After an intense and emotional three-day tryout period, Darfur United is proud to announce the 21 young refugee men that have been selected to be a part of a two-week training camp in preparation for the ConIFA World Football Cup (June 1-8). By May 22, 15 of the 21 players will be chosen to travel to Ostersund, Sweden to represent Darfur United.
Coach Margo Baker, along with i-ACT’s Gabriel Stauring and Sara-Christine Dallain, traveled to Refugee Camp Djabal in eastern Chad to run the tryouts. Refugees from nine camps along the Chad-Sudan border competed to become part of the team. This will be the second Darfur United Team, following the first team that competed in the Viva World Cup in 2012.
“When a group of men come together and compete with each other and not against each other, it’s a beautiful thing,” Coach Margo Baker said. “They gave it everything they had and left it all on the pitch. The men selected understand the true meaning of Darfur United.”
Abdulbassid, a veteran from the 2012 team who was selected for the top 21, said, “We come from many different camps and tribes. But now we are all Darfur United.”
“Conditions in the camps are getting more and more difficult because of the lack of resources from the humanitarian community. In the news, Darfur has been forgotten, as violence continues and is actually escalating. Darfur United gives these players the opportunity to bring positive attention to their people,” said i-ACT’s Founder and Executive Director, Gabriel Stauring. “It truly is a movement for hope.”
Ismail, selected for the first time, said: “This is a golden chance for us and for all of Darfur. I am so proud to be a part of Darfur United.”
Darfur United is supported by individuals. To support Darfur United and the team’s journey to the ConIFA World Football Cup, visit www.darfurunited.com/du-2014. You can help by becoming involved with i-ACT, donating, fundraising, and buying items from the Darfur United store.
The Confederation of Independent Football Associations (ConIFA) is hosting the World Football Cup in Ostersund, Sweden June 1-9. Twelve teams from around the world will be competing for the Cup. Games will be streamed live online and tickets and information about attending the matches can be found at www.worldfootballcup.org.
i-ACT empowers individuals within communities, institutions, and governments to take personal responsibility to act on behalf of those affected by genocide, mass atrocities, and crimes against humanity. i-ACT is global team dedicated to putting a face on the numbers of the dead, dying, and displaced while creating mutually enriching relationships between those in danger and those willing and able to act, fostering a new culture of participation. Visit www.iactivism.org and www.darfurunited.com for more information.