Refugee kids escorted National football players on to the pitch


Under UNICEF’s program, that promotes family unity and values “Every child needs family” and in collaboration with UNHCR, two refugee children were invited to the soccer game to escort football players onto the pitch.

Two refugee kids Zam-Zam Ruslan and Akdas Abdul Latif along with other ‘mascots’ led the players on to the pitch wearing UNICEF t-shirts.  

A friendly match between the national teams of the Kyrgyz Republic and Lebanon took place on October 6 at Dolon Omurzakov stadium in Bishkek.

This is my first time being in a football game, and I am very happy to walk on to the pitch with real football players. I really liked it. In the future, I also want to be a football player. While holding hand of a player and walking onto field I was a bit nervous and my heart started beating very fast. I feel inspired,” shares with his impressions a nine-year old Ruslan, son of a Syrian refugee.

It is really impressive for us. This is our first time watching real football game in the stadium. For a long time I have been offering to my son Akdas to go to football club and play and now, he feels very inspired and wants to join a club to learn to play football. I was emotional and proud to seeing my son walking on to the field with football players.  I am very grateful for UNHCR for helping and providing us with such opportunities that help us to better integrate,” says Abdul Latif Abdul Hashim, a refugee from Afghanistan.

UNICEF in collaboration with the Football Federation of the Kyrgyz Republic has conducted a series of thematic football games dedicated to disabled children, kids in need and vulnerable families, and this time to family unity.