The Klabu Foundation is helping young refugees rebuild their lives through sports

Today, there are 25.4 million refugees across the globe: men, women and children forced to flee their countries due to war or persecution. This is a record high since World War II. More than half of these refugees are under 18 years old, and many spend their entire youth living in difficult conditions in refugee camps, where their days are long and there is little to do.

Amsterdam based non-profit Klabu (meaning “club” in Swahili) are building sports clubs across refugee camps, settlements, and cities, where refugees can rebuild their lives through sports.

The first sports club Klabu opened this year was in Kalobeyei, Kenya. To kickstart the launch, KLABU have created the Kalobeyei Spirit sports / streetwear kit which is available to purchase online on As well as a campaign which includes a 30-page print booklet a series of campaign films and portraits of refugees and locals living in the Kalobeyei settlement, created by The Kennedys, and shot by Dutch-Nigerian Photographer Coco Olakunle.

When we started KLABU, we couldn’t have dreamt so many would join to make it work. All of us united in a common goal – to support refugees – through a common passion for sports. Although sports cannot solve all challenges refugees face, they do bring people together and can ultimately make ‘away’ feel more like ‘home’. – KLABU founder, Jan van Hövell

Klabu Foundation’s aim is to set up 10 clubs in the next 5 years reaching 100,000 refugees. The Kalobeyei sports club is run by the refugees and local Kenyans living in the settlement.

The kit is designed in Amsterdam together with the people in Kalobeyei and is manufactured in Italy.  The shield on the jersey badge symbolizes safety and protection and the camels signify unity among the refugees (from 13 countries) and the host community.

Nasir Ahmed Achile

Philosophy nut. I recommend Albert Camus and Eckhart Tolle to everyone I know.

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