School of Population Health

Benefits beyond football

image - Fun Report Launch

David Gonski AC Chancellor of UNSW launched world’s first-of-its-kind research report outlining the benefits of SPHCM’s Football United® program – an innovative soccer program for refugee youth to build opportunities for belonging, racial harmony and social inclusion to support their transition into Australian society.

On Friday 19 October, over 200 people congregated at the University of NSW to celebrate a Football United journey over the last 3 years, and look ahead to the future of sport for social development with robust evidence that it has a hugely positive impact.

The report - divided into 4 digestable sections - provides an insight into the personal, social and community benefits of participating in regular training, leadership opportunities and educational opportunities with Football United. The longtitudinal study included interviews with participants and key informants over 3 years at schools that ran Football United programs and schools that did not. The research was undertaken by Sally Nathan, Anne Bunde-Birouste, Lynn Kemp, Clifton Evers, Julie McKenzie and Tun Shwe.

So, back to the launch. Players, ambassadors, academics, ministers, coaches and volunteers assembled on the Scientia Lawn, surrounded by national and local media who were taking every opportunity to speak to the guests. Football United Youth Leaders Ahmed Thafer and Teresa Yuol spoke eloquently time after time, describing their experiences in the program.

As SBS The World Game presenter David Basheer took to the stage, guests assembled in the auditorium. Auntie Ali performed an incredible Welcome to Country and inspired the participants to "keep moving forward" before speakers David Gonski AC, the Hon. Victor Dominello, Brian Schwartz AM, and Prof. Gillian Triggs praised Football United programs, the evidence from the research study and the participants. Special guests included John Boultbee AM, Les Murray AM, Matildas Kyah Simon and Alanna Kennedy, Albert Wong, Stefan Kamasz, Moya Dodd, Prof Raina McIntyre and Rebecca Kay.

<Research Report & Launch>
<The Power of Football United SBS coverage>