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Darfur United began in 2011, during one of i-ACT’s visits to the refugee camps in eastern Chad. Upon hearing of Darfur United, one leader said, “We are now part of the world.” In March 2012, the first Darfur United team was selected. From 61 players, 15 made the team and remained together for eight weeks of training, along with another 5 alternates. In June 2012, 16 players played in the Viva World Cup in Iraqi Kurdistan, scoring the first ever goal for Darfur United! In 2014, the team competed at the ConIFA World Football Cup in Ostersund, Sweden and have been invited to the 2016 World Football Cup in Abkhazia.
i-ACT has launched three Academies in refugee camps Touloum, Goz Amer, and Djabal, and we hope to open an Academy in all 12 camps. Volunteer coaches from the U.S. and UK travel to the camps to open the Academy, teach the soccer, peace-building and health curriculum to refugee coaches who then implement the Academy six days a week for girls and boys ages 6 to 13.