The outpouring of support for Soccer Salam has been incredible, allowing us to reach and exceed our original fundraising target of $20,000.
If you’ve already donated, thank you so much!
Soccer Salam started with a simple idea: to deliver emergency assistance to Iraq’s most vulnerable families and to always include soccer balls for the children. That idea is now being carried out by a coalition of charities and volunteers, including our extraordinary Baghdad-based partner. Together, in the midst of a record heat wave, we reached hundreds of vulnerable families in Baghdad, Kirkuk, and Babil.
In August, our Soccer Salam team in Iraq delivered $10,000 of emergency aid and soccer balls to 500 families in the besieged city of Khaladiyah (between ISIS-held Fallujah and ISIS-held Ramadi). None of the UN or major aid agencies had yet reached these families.
The soccer balls are far more than a calling card.
When our Soccer Salam team arrives to deliver aid, the children know that they have not been forgotten. Every soccer ball delivered is an affirmation of their right to play, and through soccer, we are bringing children together and nurturing a sense of belonging that can help them heal from the traumas of war.
The aid workers who volunteered for the mission are true heroes in every sense of the word. Their selfless acts of courage and leadership speak to the true character of the Iraq that I know and have come to love.
That’s the kind of humanitarian volunteerism and leadership that your support is helping to further in Iraq today.