The Dayton World Soccer Games which will be held Sept. 21-22 is hoping to bring people together from the region’s many immigrant communities through soccer.
The games are the inspiration of Welcome Dayton, an immigrant-friendly initiative that helps to integrate new residents.
One of the many volunteers that has helped to make this new event a success is Jacques Kahindo. Kahindo, 47, hails from the Democratic Republic of Congo but he and his family have called Dayton home since 1993. He is a graduate of Sinclair Community College where he earned a master’s degree in International Affairs and Comparative Politics and teaches as adjunct professor at Wilberforce University.
What he does: “I work closely with organizing officials as a representative of the African refugees that are participating in the games as well as filling registration forms and recruiting teams. I wanted to get involved because I not only saw the opportunity to serve my community but also to have fun playing games while raising awareness and introducing our community to our host country.”
What is the most satisfying thing about volunteering: “I am gratified (to be a part of the games) because I feel welcomed in Dayton, Ohio. This is going to be a day of fun and enjoyment, a day in which refugees can forget their struggle and celebrate themselves.”
How can you get involved: Kahindo said that they are still in need of volunteers such as referees, event planning staff and vendors. Those interested can call (937) 333-8400.
The games will be held at the Action Sports Center 1103 Gateway Dr. Dayton and are free and open to the public.