Playing for Hope
Football is the universal language of scores of millions of people around the world, including countless children and teenagers. Young people play in narrow, urban alleyways, in refugee camps, in abandoned swimming pools, in car parks, war zones, on street corners, wherever there are young people it seems there is football. But the sport is more than just a game. It's a positive lifestyle. It's a way to promote a peaceful approach to conflict resolution. It's a tool for wooing a young body away from the lures of the harmful habits. It's a way to help ensure that young people grow up healthy, fit and full of self-esteem.
The game of football can be used in various ways, from helping children recover from trauma to encouraging their physical and emotional development. Football is also a valuable educational tool - a familiar setting in which to bring potentially life-saving information to hard-to-reach youth. In these and many other ways, football can help young people reclaim their childhood in situations where it has been forcibly put on hold.
TYO provides the local children of Nablus with a safe environment where they can have fun, express themselves fully, and learn different physical, social and life skills that will help them grow into valuable members of society. Football is beneficial to kids because it promotes physical activity, builds character and promotes mental and physical exercise. For me, football is a vital tool that needs to be utilized to help aid these children’s mental and physical development.
Danish is an intern at TYO in Nablus.