Youth in Kikla have again a place to practice sports

Moud and MohamedMohammed Al-Shafar (left) and Muaad Tarish (right) attend a training session at Kikla Sport Center. Photo: ©UNDP/Malek Elmaghrebi

Mohammed Al-Shafar and Muaad Tarish (11 and 12 years old)  joined the taekwondo club at Kikla Sport Center in 2011. In a couple of months, these two-young people got the opportunity to take part of several national competitions and win many medals. During the conflict that affected the Kikla in 2014, the sport center where they use to practice this modality was damaged and the equipment stolen.

Kikla Sport Center was created in 1981 and it is the only one of its kind in the city. In 2014, the center had more than five clubs containing around 50 members each.

Highlights

  • Led by the Government of National Accord (GNA) and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Stabilization Facility for Libya is an immediate stabilization initiative which provides quick rehabilitation of critical infrastructure and delivery of equipment to support local authorities to improve its services to their citizens.
  • The Facility has delivered two ambulances, a fire engine, generators, solar panels, and school furniture among others items. It has also rehabilitated the main hospital of the city, a university building and Kikla Sport Center.
  • Several families returned to Kikla because of the opportunity that their children have now to use the sport center.

“I moved to Tripoli with my parents. That was the only way I had to keep doing my exercises,” said Mohammed Al-Shafar.

Al-Shafar was not the only one who left Kikla after the destruction of the sport center. 30 other members of his team moved somewhere else along with their families.

“In Tripoli, we could not meet regularly to do exercises together like we were doing in Kikla as the city is too big and our families were settled in different neigbourhoods,” explained Mohammed. “We had to join different taekwondo clubs in the capital or to meet to do exercises in the streets from time to time,” he added.

Led by the Government of National Accord (GNA) and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), with support from the international community, the Stabilization Facility for Libya (SFL) rehabilitated Kikla Sport center, allowing hundreds of young people to rejoin their local sport clubs.

“The reopening of the center contributed to bringing life back to the city,” said Kikla Sport Center director, Mr. Selem Alqadhi. “Youth in Kikla have now a place to practice their hobbies and improve their sports skills and even their knowledges since we are planning to establish a sports library as part of the center,” he explained.

Several families returned to Kikla because of the opportunity that their children have now to use the sport center.

 “I love seeing my children practicing their hobbies, so the rehabilitation of the sport center became decisive for me and my family to go back to Kikla,” said Muaad’s father, Mr. Ibrahim Mohamed Taleish. “I am glad to see Muadh rejoining his team,” he added.

Muaad is also happy to be again with his friends in the team. He hopes to represent Kikla in national and international taekwondo competitions in the future.

“Together with my team I am working hard to be prepared for potential competitions to come despite the shortage of equipment in the sport center,” said Muaad. 

The Stabilization Facility for Libya is in the process of providing Kikla Sport Center with modern equipment.

_MG_1134Mohammed Al-Shafar (left) and Muaad Tarish (right) during a training session at Kikla Sport Center. Photo: ©UNDP/ Malek Elmaghrebi

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