Following Croydon's #WeStandTogether Campaign of 2017, CVA pledged to find a way to help refugees and those from new communities to feel more integrated into the wider community.

CVA successfully applied to the Mayor's London Together Campaign, managed by Comic Relief to deliver a new project that uses sport as a tool to improve social integration between refugees and the mainstream sports sector in Croydon.

We will work with community organisations who are supporting refugees and are interested in the impact that sport and physical activity can have on an individuals' mental and physical wellbeing.

We will focus on creating a team of volunteer activators, who will be refugees themselves, and who are passionate about using sport to engage people and improve their lives. CVA will train them and support them to set up informal activities for their peers.

However, we are also looking for community sports clubs who want to ensure their clubs are welcoming to all. We will give training and additional support to clubs plus provide a volunteer placement from one of our activators to encourage more refugees to progress into local clubs on a permanent basis.

We aim to provide a collective of 'Croydon Welcomes' sports clubs that will receive additional funding and capacity support to make them more sustainable and more reflective of the community in which they operate. As a spin off, they may also find a new Mo Farah, Victor Moses or Luol Deng amongst their new club members.

If you are over 18 and would like to become an activator - or a sports club that welcomes the whole community contact catrina.lynch@cvalive.org.uk to get involved.

Launching the project!

CVA launched the We Stand Together project as part of Amnesty’s Football Welcomes campaign supported by Palace for Life Foundation at the Crystal Palace game against Everton on Saturday 27th April!

The Amnesty Campaign celebrates the contribution that professional players such as Christian Benteke and Victor Moses who were once refugees have made to sport.  But much smaller clubs in Croydon can also benefit from potential new members.

We Stand Together translates this national campaign into local action, celebrating the contribution of refugees locally and using sport to improve social integration across Croydon.

Afghanistan Cricket Trip

On Saturday 15th June 2019, a group of refugees, mainly from Afghanistan took a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Cardiff to watch Afghanistan take on South Africa in the ICC Cricket World Cup.  Harshil Trivedi, Coach and Founder Thornton Heath Cricket Club, and fellow coach, Asad Butt, (both have successfully been nominated for ICC's Cricket Hero's project) managed to get them there with contributions from CVA, Surrey Cricket Foundation, Lingua House, We Stand Together Activators, and Students from BEATS learning.  Read more