SolidarityNow participates in the 5km race of this year’s Athens Classic Marathon, with the first group of refugees in the history of the Marathon, which consists of 15 refugees’ – beneficiaries of the organization’s Hosting Scheme project. The #SolidarityNow_Refugee_Team, along with its coaches, will send its own message of solidarity, unity and peaceful coexistence through the 2016 Athens Classic Marathon.
A message for global solidarity
The members of SolidarityNow_Refugee_Team state that “all of us escaping our country to be away from war and persecutions, we were offered hospitality and help by the Greek people; our participation in the Classic Marathon of Athens, sends a message for the need of global solidarity and world peace. We have lived the tragedy of war, one that our people left behind unfortunately continue to suffer. It is an obligation of us who have managed to leave Syria, to send a strong message of life and solidarity to the world leaders – do not forget us!”.
The refugees who will take part in the race are of Syrian origin and temporarily accommodated at the SolidarityNow housing structures, in the framework of the Hosting Scheme Project which is implemented by SolidarityNow with the support of UNHCR and EU funding. All the participants are asylum seekers and in the forthcoming future they will be relocated to another European country to start their new life.
The historical Classic Marathon of Athens, a vehicle for the win against discrimination
“I run to win of course, and if I manage to win then I will be very proud of my team and the fact that someone from Syria has been distinguished in this race!”, Nouri says.
“I fight and I train to forget believing that sports help in our predicament. It is very important that our team has athletes from Syria with Greek coaches. This race is special since it is of great historical importance!”, Abdullah says.
“I hope that with my participation in the Marathon, I can encourage Syrian people not to despair as well as to show to the Greek people that refugees are people like everybody else. We are all the same. We are all one”,Nori tells us.
On Sunday, November 13th, the Classic Marathon of Athens will send an additional message through the first Refugee Team for coexistence, humanity, participation and equality.
Photo credit: Giorgos Georgiou