Can’t wait to get on the football (soccer) field at camp Djabal. It then becomes simple. Well, for me it does. I get to enjoy watching the game I love. I’m sure that for the up to 60 players that will be competing to be one of 15 selected for the 2014 squad, it might be nerve racking, at least at the start. A field and a round object have incredible powers. Once on the field with a ball, our guys are no longer “refugees,” or “survivors,” or “victims.” They are players. Some of them might even be called “ballers”!

One of those ballers is Iggy. He’s a player that has a style all of his own, on and off the field. He’s also a classy, polite, and caring young man. It was so good to see him today here in the capital. He has finished his English courses, right on time to travel to Djabal for the try-outs, which will start this coming week, a bit later than we expected because of important meetings we are having here with the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, the Chadian refugee agency, CNARR, and possibly other agencies whose support we need for taking Darfur United to compete in Sweden.

I have been in touch with Djabal teacher, Abdulaziz. He’s in charge of organizing the refugee community in his camp to receive the players. He has prepared living quarters and arranged for meals at a refugee-run restaurant. Thanks to a wonderful donor that truly believes in Darfur United and its power to bring hope and real support to the refugees, we are able to provide the funding for all of these in-country costs. We still need your support to cover some of the travel expenses from Chad to Sweden. You can pick your player here.

It’s going to be an exciting, bumpy ride. The field at Djabal will also be bumpy—and sandy!—but it will be a joy to watch Iggy and others do their thing, competing to represent Darfur before the world. I can’t wait!

Gabriel and Darfur United Alum Iggy Photo: Sara-Christine/i-ACT

Gabriel and Darfur United Alum Iggy. Photo: Sara-Christine/i-ACT

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