Despite being displaced, residents in the Ein Issa camp are enjoying the World Cup through an initiative carried out by al-Qubba association. The association provided the residents of the camp a large screen and a receiver which streams all world cup matches.
At the Ein Issa internally displaced people (IDP) camp in northern Raqqa Province, northeastern Syria, a World Cup tent has been set up by al-Qubba Association to show daily screenings of the World Cup matches to the camp’s residents.
Dozens of people gather at the World Cup tent every day to watch one of the three (and now four) daily matches taking place in stadiums across western Russia.
Although Syria’s national football team failed to qualify for the World Cup, Syrians living in Ein Issa are still passionate for the sport, with many choosing a preferred country to win.
“We thank al-Qubba Association in the camp of Ein Issa for providing this beautiful initiative,” said one of the camp’s residents. “The initiative [provided us with] a screen and a Bein-Sport Receiver to watch the World Cup matches. The turnout is great and there are many sports followers in the camp. During ISIS‘ rule, people were deprived of television, sports activities and many things.”
The World Cup initiative provides the residents of the IDP camp at Ein Issa with a welcome reprieve from the harsh daily reality of life in a refugee camp. Support provided to the camp’s residents by aid organisations has been limited. The organisations themselves blame the sporadic aid deliveries on continuous funding and access issues, as well as the massive scale of Syria’s internal and external displacement, which has stretched their resources to breaking point.
However, many of the camp’s residents welcome the sense of normality that the World Cup has brought them, as well as the opportunity to socialise with their neighbours and form a greater community within the camp.
“We thank the camp administration and the brothers at al-Qubba Association for this beautiful and entertaining initiative for the camp and [its] refugees,” said another of the camp’s residents. “God bless them, this initiative is very good.”