Donation of secondhand boots allows former refugee Nasim Yousofi to enjoy his new passion - soccer.ESTELLE GRIEPINK June 21, 2014 4:28pm
Asylum seeker Nasim Yousofi's enjoyment of soccer has blossomed following the donation of secondhand soccer boots.
Former refugee Nasim Yousofi knows what a big difference a pair of soccer boots can make to someone’s life.
Nasim, 17, arrived in Shepparton as an unaccompanied minor in 2008.
Previously, he had been living in Pakistan to escape the war in his homeland of Afghanistan.
‘‘When I got here, it was pretty hard,’’ Nasim said.
‘‘I didn’t know anyone and I felt lonely.’’
Nasim’s life turned around when he met Shepparton couple Luis Rodriguez and Elisabeth Dunne, who run a social soccer program for newly arrived asylum seekers.
They use their own time and money to shuttle the boys to and from soccer games as well as acting as second parents.
‘‘When I came to Australia I didn’t even know the meaning of the word soccer,’’ he said.
‘‘I was kicking other people’s legs.
‘‘I love playing soccer because I get to see the other boys and I love to kick goals.’’
Nasim plays for Tatura’s under-17 team, where he is the team’s best striker, and Wanganui Park Secondary College’s senior team, wearing a pair of secondhand boots.
He is encouraging people to donate to Asylum Sneakers, a fundraiser aimed at providing football boots to young asylum seekers who otherwise could not afford them.
‘‘I was so happy when I got my first pair of boots. They looked like (Cristiano) Ronaldo’s,’’ Nasim said.
‘‘It’ll make (young asylum seekers) feel good to get a pair of boots.’’
Refugee support network Welcome to Australia hopes to deliver hundreds of football boots to young asylum seekers.
A Euroa man was hospitalised after crashing his motorcycle at Nathalia.
Police investigating a break and enter at a Mulwala club more than 10 years ago are renewing their appeal for public assistance by releasing an image of a person they believe has information to assist them.
Tatura’s Victory Hall is set for a big year as preparations get under way to celebrate the hall’s 90th birthday in September.
Echuca Football Club keeps rolling out the red carpet with another recruit arriving at Victoria Park.
Rochester Secondary College school captains Dom Atley and Tim Poole have been accepted to study biomedical science in the first step towards becoming doctors.
Will it be Merrigum or Lancaster?
Fire destroys key public buildings in Seymour
Finley Henry Matheson was bestowed one of the highest Australia Day honours.
Heathcote Hostel residents were treated to a visit from Heathcote’s favourite horse, Sub Zero, as part of Australia Day celebrations.
Recent weather conditions have come as a mixed blessing for farmers, with high rainfall and humidity providing a respite for irrigators as well as difficult growing and picking conditions for fruit growers.
Darren McLoughlin only started playing croquet seven years ago.
From orchards to harvest to shelves, a new exhibition will celebrate the Goulburn Valley’s iconic fruit industry. The Photos of the Fruit Industry exhibition will run as part of the SheppARTon Festival in March and aims to share memories and history of an industry that has shaped the region.
Former Benalla footballer Tom Rockliff has been named captain of the Brisbane Lions Football Club.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.