In the Loire, football is a factor of integration for a young Ukrainian


The integration of a young Ukrainian through sport

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Pavlo, a 10-year-old Ukrainian refugee, is now part of the Sorbiers football team in the Loire. This activity comforts the young boy, far from the fighting in his country. Successful integration through sport.

On the pitch of the Sorbiers la Talaudière club in the Loire, with his STF flocked jersey, Pavlo is a player like the others. After fleeing Ukraine with his mother a few weeks ago, he quickly found a football club to take him in. A comfort for the young boy who can put on his crampons again, far from the war.

I’m happy to be here. When I play football, it’s like before the war and here I made new friends;


Ukrainian refugee

If the child does not yet speak French, he relies on a friend from his team, also of Ukrainian origin. Elias therefore serves as his interpreter, aware of what football can bring to his new comrade.

It helps him, it makes him think about something else, because he often thinks about the war in Ukraine, he worries about his father.

Pavlo was immediately adopted by the Sorbiers football team and blended into the group. His trainer is full of praise for him. Vincent Sorlin indeed praises his qualities as a player, his team spirit and his ability to adapt during training and during matches. A completely successful integration thanks to football, as the municipal sports assistant likes to point out.

He manages to laugh, he is happy, he only talks about football, he arrives on time. At school it’s going very well, sport is a real factor of integration, there we have living proof of that.

Olivier Villetelle

Sports assistant at the town hall of Sorbiers

An integration that does not make him forget his country of origin and if Pavlo rebuilds himself thanks to football, he hopes to return to Ukraine one day.

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