Sir Bobby Charlton Centre in Jordan named Ockenden International Prize finalist

A programme at the Sir Bobby Charlton Centre in Jordan has been named a finalist for the 2019 Ockenden International Prize.

The programme trains Syrian refugees with disabilities to provide peer-to-peer support to others who have been physically and psychologically affected by conflict. Trainees typically have received support themselves for their own needs, and are in a perfect position to help others grappling with similar challenges.

Besides giving them the knowledge, skills, and techniques needed to be effective mentors in their communities, the training has also helped recipients become more employable. Several training graduates have since taken positions with other non-governmental organisations.

The Sir Bobby Charlton Centre programme is one of eleven projects from over a hundred entries named as finalists by the Ockenden International for their annual prize. Winners of four prizes worth £25,000 each will be announced in London at the end of March.

Speaking of the eleven finalists, Ockenden International chairman Vin Ray said, “Thousands of refugees and internally displaced persons – and the communities in which they live – are benefitting from the self-reliance and independence these projects promote.

“We hope the prize money will enable the winning projects to extend best practice and their reach in what is the worst of times for refugees, internally displaced persons, and asylum seekers.”

Find A Better Way CEO Lou McGrath is delighted the Sir Bobby Charlton Centre in Jordan has been named a finalist for such a prestigious international prize.

“The work our team in Amman do is incredibly important to helping restore the lives of disabled refugees,” Lou said. “We are especially proud of the way the training enables refugees to care for each other. This makes it is a sustainable programme that embeds skills in the community for the long term. Those that take part deserve the recognition.”

The Sir Bobby Charlton Centre in Amman, Jordan was opened in August 2016 and provides physical and psychological therapy for refugees from conflicts in Syria, Iraq, and Yemen.

Ockenden International was founded in Surrey, England in 1951 initially to care for European refugees after World War II. The Ockenden International Prize was launched in 2012 and has awarded over half a million pounds to projects that aid refugees or displaced people.