Balls Given Out in Jordan!
First set of donated balls given out to kids! It's been a while since we've updated our progress. Traveling through Jordan doing assignments with the US Army, Founder Trey McMinn has been able to dive into the local communities and get a feel for the needs of the children around the capital of Amman.
The capital is an intoxicating chaos, a melding intersection where the new world clashes with the traditions of one of mankind's longest continuously occupied cities. "The City of Stairs" ebbs and flows compactly with buildings (and their inhabitants) seemingly on top of each other as the wadis cut the city in sections. The divide of have's and have not's is immediately apparent. Nestled up next to two countries of significant conflicts over the last 20 years, Jordan takes the brunt of refugees that have poured in from Iraq and continue to pour in from Syria. And unlike its neighbors, the nation does not have the natural resources to drive its economy.
While the country does well to leverage what it does have (increasing tourism with Petra, Jerash, Wadi Rum, the Dead Sea and more + a bustling medical tourism function), the pure mass of refugees places a strain on an already tough economic setting. These refugees often huddle together to keep their community bonds, but the damage of their journey is evident. Swaths of tent 'cities' cover parts of the capital of Amman and the territory north of Al Zarqa. It's here that we have focused our efforts in Jordan.
En route to work for the Army, Trey has been stopping in these communities to give away donated soccer balls from PARK Social Soccer Club, Iraqi Soccer Project's official ball partner. These balls are a huge hit! While the language barrier and generally shy nature of these displaced children can make the interactions a patient process, the smile on a child's face says it all. It's the reaction so universally associated with the Beautiful Game. With more balls on the way from PARK SSC, ISP has an unique opportunity to really give these children a taste of the lives conflict has taken from them.
Donations are being accepted through the ISP GoFundMe page. (see here: https://www.gofundme.com/iraqi-soccer-project) These donations will go toward covering the Project's shipping costs for getting 500 (!!!) PARK SSC balls to Jordan and to contribute to an upcoming partnership with the Pass Project. More details to follow on this exciting opportunity!
If you cannot donate, please help spread our message. All of these children deserve a ball at their feet.