"Our community football team"
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My name is Chancel. I’m 25 years old and I am from Brazzaville, Congo. Here is my story:

In the late nineties my country went through a civil war leaving many orphans and many refugees spread throughout Africa, mainly in neighbouring countries. My family went on to refuge in Libreville Gabon, where we stayed until 2006. Life there was impossible for every Congolese refugee. Families had almost nothing to feed or educate their kids. Many families went on to lose their parents through sickness because there was no money to treat them or buy medication. In late 2005 the New Zealand government sent three officials to Libreville to help a few families to immigrate to New Zealand through the Refugee Quota Programme.

By May 2006, some 100 Congolese refugees in Gabon moved to New Zealand under the refugee programme. Speaking only French, life in New Zealand was not easy for a start, but thanks to the Kiwis' caring most of us managed to speak English within six months in this country and our parents today are happy because their kids can go to school in a peaceful environment and they can feed them without wondering what they will eat tomorrow.

Almost six years after our arrival in New Zealand many families have grown with new borns and some finding and bringing over their kids which they had lost during the war....In 2008 we created our community football team and we have played in many local competitions, the most challenging being the Ethkick tournment. This tournament is played in March every year. Teams represent all the different communities in our city. We have reached the semi-final twice and lost on penalties both times against the Saudis and Romanians.

We don't have a car to drive our players to the competition or to training so we don't train and try to get every body to walk to the venue because there is no early bus on the weekends in our city. Winning this car would be life changing for our football team.

Thanks for your consideration,
Chancel (VA2010wb)
Congolese Team Captain