Last week, the Badminton World Federation (BWF) delivered a training course to educate Syrian refugees as badminton teachers using the BWF Shuttle Time programme.
The initiative is part of BWF’s commitment to further humanitarian, peace and development-supporting activities in the Middle East, combining with the Taekwondo Humanitarian Foundation and World Taekwondo to deliver fun activities for the many children and youth visiting the Azraq Taekwondo Academy at the Azraq Refugee Camp in Jordan.
In January, the two sports signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) as part of a collaboration to promote and support humanitarian and social development initiatives around the world through sport.
The activation at the Azraq Refugee Camp saw two badminton experts from Badminton Africa and the Jordan Badminton Federation train six male and seven female Syrian refugees.
The next step is for the trained teachers to deliver weekly badminton sessions to boys and girls in the camp.
BWF President Poul-Erik Høyer said: “Badminton is a sport for all and as such we see great opportunity in uniting together with our friends at World Taekwondo to provide avenues of sport and physical activity for the children and youth at the Azraq Refugee Camp.
“Our BWF Shuttle Time programme is the perfect vehicle via which to bring in additional sports and fun activities for the camp’s population and we are excited to see the first teachers trained up.
“We hope that by the end of the programme all the children at the Azraq Refugee Camp will now see badminton as a fun and enjoyable sport and will want to play more badminton.”
The BWF has plans for a badminton festival in early 2020 with continued badminton coaching scheduled throughout the year at the Azraq Refugee Camp.
The BWF has a long-standing partnership with the UNHCR (the UN Refugee Agency), having launched the BWF-UN Badminton For All Project in April 2017 and partnering with the United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP) in 2016.
Høyer said this latest collaboration creates further opportunity for badminton to make a difference.
“We are doing our jobs if badminton can contribute to a better life for others.”