IT started as a small group of kids playing futsal. Now, with more than 200 participants, Logan Roos Football Club is a force to be reckoned with.
The ffootball is important. But it’s just part of something far greater, far bigger, and far more meaningful than the game it represents.
This club has become the heart and soul of a community.
Since it began six years ago, Logan Roos has become a home away from home for more than 200 people, including 150 players from 35 different nationalities.
Members can play soccer, and they can compete at the highest levels of the game.
But when in need, they’ll be privy to transport. And the club will provide food for its players and their families, many of whom come from migrant and refugee backgrounds.
Founder, Abdul Samim Khan said he has always been a soccer fan and wanted to support Logan migrants and refugees in a way he knew how.
“I have a love of football and played a fair bit growing up,” he said.
“I refereed for the Australian Soccer Federation in Sydney in the 90s, but due to family commitments and other things I couldn’t achieve my dream of playing. So, now I really want to help others get to achieve their dreams.
“It started with just a couple of kids playing futsal and we soon grew, having to get ourselves a football field to play on.”
Mr Khan said living in Logan for 18 years, he noticed many migrant youths had a lot of natural talent.
“Logan is so diverse, colourful, and cultural. After spending time in the community, I noticed there were so many youths with a lot of potential and natural talent that was being overlooked,” he said.
“Logan is full of refugees and migrants who have left their war-torn countries to come here for a better future. Many of them came from trauma and have seen or gone through many tragedies, they have had to leave their families and loved ones behind.
“Many are also not educated academically or computer literate and aren’t aware of the programs to help their children.”
Mr Khan was last month named Logan’s 2022 volunteer of the year. He said the club was very important to the community.
“Programs like this help keep Logan safe and keeps kids out of trouble and away from the drugs and alcohol,” he said.
“Many young migrants and refugees deal with the mental stress and trauma of moving here from their countries and these programs give them self-confidence and the skills to help achieve their goals and to focus on something else.
“I feel these services also help build better communities, friendships and stop discrimination and prejudice against migrants and refugees.”
Mr Khan said while the majority of the club’s participants are from an Islamic background, he welcomes everybody.
“I want to help where I can; nurture young talent, help create smiles and positive changes in the community,” he said.
“One day we hope to see the club produce young football stars that will represent at a high level, and also bring on people to help take the program to another level.”
For more information about the Logan Roos Football Club you can visit their Facebook page.