Monday, May 10, 2010

Now New Americans and Refugees Can Be Directed My Way

Posted By on Mon, May 10, 2010 at 8:25 AM

“To the resettlement agencies and refugee volunteers in Boise, send new Americans my way, should any have passion for soccer and socializing with fellows from their countries.”

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Boise Wonders is an international soccer team and my brainchild, established last year, 2009, with the help from David Wani from Sudan and Mahamudi Hadji from Somalia. The objective behind the idea was simple—soccer is the world's number one sport and with the diversity occurring in Boise, we wanted to create something that can bring our brothers together. What could do that better than football, as it’s known to the rest of the world.

David, Mahamudi and I managed to put this group together last year and executed a number of friendly games against other African teams around the country. One game in Seattle, Washington with the Somali Bantu team and a return leg in Boise, which we won 4-1 on aggregate, another one with a Sudanese team from Salt Lake City Utah which ended 4-4 and few local friendlies with teams around Boise.

Due to financial problems, we failed to join any of the two local leagues last year and it looked like we hit a dead end. But my hopes in the group of kids and mature plays that traveled to Seattle with me last summer never faded even a bit, and that inspired me to join David and Mahamudi again and ensure this team join the conquest in Boise. The charisma this time was high within the group and with the team's effort we managed to raise just enough money to get 19 players join the Boise Soccer League in March.

Boise Wonders so far has managed to compete for first prize in the league and it’s being regarded as one of the best teams in the league with 1 loss, 2 draws and 4 wins. After leading the first two games as coach and player, I finally got a break when a Papa Gode arrived from Congo and took the coaching task from me.

Last week, 10 members of the team, players and supporters have privileged the team with their helping hand to sponsor us with just enough money to keep players and team in the league for the next season and I am so overwhelmed with their commitment. Among them too came the words of wisdom to keep the kids on the right foot. This has just open doors for others that maybe willing to help or join this board of sponsors to join in.

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To IRC, ANA, World Relief and others who work with refugees and new Americans—should there be people that take passion in soccer arriving in Boise and need a place to socialize with others, please send them my way. The team is an International team with players from all over the globe, not only Africa. I hope to welcome these new Americans on the team and with the sponsors joining in, they shouldn’t have to pay a thing to play.

Boise Wonders still have two games left this season and the three day tournament coming in June—this should be an exciting journey for us and the Boise soccer community.

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