Watch this video of the opening of the new football pitch

Football at Harsham

We appealed to our supporters for funds to build a new football pitch at Harsham IDP camp on the outskirts of Erbil. The camp hosts around 1,500 internally displaced families from Mosul and the surrounding villages, many of them victims of ISIS. Most are Muslim but some are Christian.

As you may have seen from previous updates, the artificial grass had come apart due to constant use. For months, the children were playing on the stony ground underneath. But now, thanks to those who made generous donations, the new pitch is finished! 

We paid for the new artificial grass and a completely new drainage system, and for the fences and posts to be repaired and repainted. Our longstanding partner, Barzani Charity Foundation (BCF), organised the work. Together, we employed occupants of the camp to help carry out the work.

Our man in northern Iraq, Abdulrahman Muhammed (wearing pale chinos) cuts the ribbon with the BCF team

The positive power of The Beautiful Game

We are grateful to our Iraq Programme Manager, Abdulrahman Muhammad, for leading on this project and working to a tight deadline. You can see the end result – a new pitch which is bringing joy and hope to the young men and boys at Harsham. In the coming weeks we will share more videos, including interviews.  

Going forward, we want to fund an inspirational football coach called Dastan. The boys think very highly of him. Dastan says: “The boys have a lot of energy which needs to be released in a positive way. Keeping busy with sport and making friends is such a benefit for them.” It is people like Dastan who make these projects work.

Dastan (the football coach) leading a training session before the pitch was repaired

We are so grateful for the support we have received to pay for the new pitch. However, we still need funding for the monthly costs (including paying Dastan’s salary). We also have ambitions to establish more football pitches across the Nineveh Plain, to bring hope to the young people there who have suffered so much. If you would like to support this project or any others, please see the giving options below.

Please help and make a donation 

Please support our work by making a donation via our donate page (there are numerous options for how to donate). Alternatively, you can send us a cheque made out to ‘FRRME’ to: FRRME, PO Box 229, Petersfield, Hants, GU32 9DL, United Kingdom. American supporters wishing to make a donation can do so here.