The Panathlon Antwerp Sports Personality 2022 trophy was solemnly presented to Benjamin Gérard by Antwerp Alderman for Sports Peter Wouters.
Benjamin Gérard is founder and coordinator of climbing club Rising You, which facilitates the integration of refugees through sports, training and guidance towards work. The club uses sport to teach important attitudes: working together, paying attention to safety, taking the lead, and learning and practicing Dutch.
In addition to a sports club, Rising You offers various practical training courses. These are intended for refugees who have only been to school for a short time in their country of origin. Among other things, they are trained as telecom technicians. The organization Rising You in Antwerp has provided 325 refugees with a job in 5 years.
During the interview with Dr. Jan Verstuyft, the climbing club’s coach Abbas Heidari was also invited to the stage.
He talked about his way from being a refugee to working as a coach at the club. It was climbing training that helped him learn Dutch, integrate and get a job.
Find more information about the climbing club here: https://club.risingyou.be/