Volunteers create playgrounds to promote young people's engagement in recreational activities in Boroli refugee settlement, Northern Uganda
Following conflicts in South Sudan that left the country politically unstable, many people fled and were left displaced as they tried to seek asylum. Many refugees crossed the border into Northern Uganda and settled in different camps within the area most especially the region within West Nile. Adjumani district currently hosts an estimate of over 74,000 refugees in different settlements, including Boroli Refugee Settlement, which houses over 5,500 refugees consisting of multiple tribes of Murle, Madi, Kuku, Bari, Acholi, Nuba and Anuak.
Young people in Boroli settlement consistute over 2,700 of the total population. This has put a strain on the existing structures, especially social structures, with limited resources in the settlement.
ACORD and the United Nations Population Fund UNFPA volunteers mobilized young people in the settlement to clear playgrounds where the youth could play and socialize so that they can share information, keep physically healthy and have therapy to mitigate the horrendous war memories from South Sudan.
The volunteers in collaboration with local leaders (Youth Leader and Boroli Chairperson Refugee Welfare Committees) and in consultation with Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) camp Commandant and the UN’s Refugee Agency (UNHCR) spearheaded the mobilization of young people to clear land for a football playground in Boroli Settlement.
This has created a platform to share information and also serve as a social ground to reconstruct their lives while in the settlement. Through ACORD/UNFPA interventions, the young people have been supported with recreational activity items like footballs and netballs. This has also encouraged girls to take part in sporting activities. ACORD/UNFPA team also continues to support the youth in awareness raising on sexual reproductive health, like distributing condoms, organizing group therapy sessions and other young people-friendly services to boost and maintain their mental and physical health.