SLASA: Amputee football association brings together Sierra Leone’s civil war survivors

They’re members of the Single Leg Amputee Sports activities Affiliation (SLASA), a company co-founded by pastor Mambud Samai in 2001 after he returned residence towards the top of Sierra Leone’s lethal civil conflict, which lasted from 1991 to 2002 and killed at the least 50,000 folks throughout the nation. 1000’s extra had been left with lacking limbs throughout a brutal marketing campaign to terrify the civilian inhabitants.

After coming throughout a refugee camp crammed with a whole bunch of amputees, Samai felt compelled to assist. “At the moment, there have been no actions like trauma restoration for them. So, amputees believed that after they misplaced their limbs and their legs, they haven’t any future, they haven’t any alternative. So, I volunteered myself to offer them confidence,” he stated.

Whereas on the refugee camp, he met an American missionary who launched him to a type of adaptive soccer. After exhibiting the amputees how you can play, the response was overwhelming and SLASA was shaped, “to offer hope to the amputees, to offer confidence to the amputees, and to permit them to grow to be ambassadors of peace,” Samai stated.

In line with the World Amputee Soccer Federation, gamers can’t use prosthetics and as an alternative energy throughout the sector on crutches. Every crew has seven gamers on the sector at a time, with outfield gamers solely having one leg and goalkeepers solely having one arm.
A number of SLASA gamers have since gone on to compete in worldwide packages together with the World Amputee Soccer Championships, Amputee Africa Cup of Nations, and the Open European Amputee Soccer Championship.
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“Most of them are actually very proud that they will signify their nation at worldwide competitions,” Samai stated. “They’re contributing one thing again to society.”

Samai says the game will not be solely a superb type of train, nevertheless it unites gamers and serves as a “remedy” for conflict victims to face their shared trauma. “We attempt to give them hope after which give them the credibility that they’re helpful, they’re essential to society,” he stated.

Goalkeeper Ali Badara Kamara says he was given the opportunity to travel abroad through SLASA.

Ali Badara Kamara is a goalkeeper within the SLASA league. He says he is grateful for the life-changing alternatives he is obtained. “My mom was afraid (for) me to play soccer as a result of she sees me as an amputee. She thought that if I fell on the ground, I might have one other drawback,” he says. “However SLASA (has) taken me to Ghana, Kenya, Tanzania.”

Kamara is among the greater than 80 million folks with disabilities residing throughout the continent. In line with the United Nations, that determine consists of these with psychological well being situations, delivery defects and different bodily impairments. With assistive units typically unavailable or unaffordable, many discover employment laborious to come back by and are left begging on the streets.

Serving to past the pitch

Whereas soccer matches solely final 90 minutes, Samai’s newest mission is to discover a means to assist amputees past the pitch.

“My ardour (is) to ensure that each life, no matter your incapacity or no matter your background, that you’ll be able to be joyful and you’ll be able to smile on the finish of the day,” Samai stated.

Samai (left) meets with SLASA player Maxwell Fornah at the National Rehabilitation Center in Sierra Leone.
To attain that, SLASA works carefully with the Nationwide Rehabilitation Heart in Sierra Leone and companions with worldwide organizations like SwissLimbs to offer prosthetics for amputees and prepare native technicians.

In 2018, Samai traveled to Japan to check sustainable agriculture management and neighborhood growth. Upon his return, he started providing courses on sustainable agriculture by SLASA.

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SLASA additionally assesses members’ training and gives studying assets to these in want. Its purpose is to get extra amputees off the streets and supply them with a protected approach to make a residing for themselves and their households.

Up to now, Samai says SLASA has straight assisted 350 amputees, and hopes to develop that quantity. The last word purpose is to construct a regulation pitch and rehabilitation middle of its personal.

“We wish Sierra Leone to compete with one other nations by way of growth,” Samai stated. “We consider that disabled folks shouldn’t be left behind.”

Watch the complete episode of African Voices that includes Mambud Samai right here.

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Halo, Saya adalah penulis artikel dengan judul SLASA: Amputee football association brings together Sierra Leone’s civil war survivors yang dipublish pada April 7, 2023 di website Enchantress Magazine

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