icon icon icon icon icon icon icon

Young people brought together through sports

A man in black shirt and shorts stands before a group of people wearing boxing gloves

Aziz Yasser with the club’s boxing team

Aziz Yasser with the club’s boxing team

During crises, young people and children are among the most vulnerable groups and are severely affected, with interrupted schooling, health and nutrition issues, and protection risks the main consequences. Young people and children who have experienced armed conflict, as well as violence and disturbing displacement situations, are more likely to show changes in their social relations and behaviours. Sleeping problems, withdrawal, and difficulty concentrating are some of the symptoms usually shown by displaced young people. These negative effects are intensified further by uncertainty about the future.

Due to the conflict, the only sports club in the city was destroyed,” says 38-year-old Aziz Yasser, a former martial arts champion from Al Houta district of Lahj governorate, “This left young people with few opportunities to physically express themselves.

Two Men with boxing gloves
Aziz and one of his trainees smiling after a friendly boxing fight

Al-Taleea’a sports club is the only club in the city of Al-Houta where young people can express themselves through sport. The club provides volleyball, Japanese wrestling, and boxing classes, but due to the lack of support and neglect, the building and facilities deteriorated and became unfit for training.

Hope was brought back to Aziz through a CARE project focused on strengthening access to social safety nets and basic services. With funding from the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development  (BMZ), and in partnership with the World Food Programme, CARE provided short-term employment opportunities to the most vulnerable and food-insecure households.

The project supported cash-for-work activities to rehabilitate the sports club, as well as irrigation and water systems, roads and schools in Lahj with the aim of mitigating the economic effects of the ongoing conflict. “I used to visit the club every day during the rehabilitation work,” says Aziz. “I was super excited to train kids and youth again.

The project led to friendly relations between adolescents, providing them with the space they needed to overcome the difficulties they face as a result of years of war. The club succeeded in bringing youth together through sports so they can achieve mental and physical balance.

Aziz explains that the sports club has big plans for the future: “We will form the first official running team for youth in Lahj,” he says. “This initiative will encourage young people to be brave to explore activities they are interested in. I’m sure this team will pave the way for them to practice more sports.

Back to Top