“Through sustainable investments, refugee youth can engage with their society in an unprecedented manner and inevitably influence decisions and local policies.”

Waleed Abu Nada is an award-winning social entrepreneur, consultant and strategist who has gained global recognition as a mentor for youth in disadvantaged communities. He is the founder and director of The Champ Camp, a social enterprise actively empowering and developing the youth of Al-Baqa’a Camp for Palestinian refugees in Jordan through local interventions. His work lies at the intersection of social innovation and community growth, with a strong focus on sports-based youth development.

As the son of Palestinian refugees himself, Waleed’s identity has often been the driving force behind his work. As such, his sports-based solutions, among others, provide a powerful platform for young Palestinian refugees to share their stories and challenge existing narratives. In 2018, Waleed was recognised for his efforts when he became the first-ever Arab recipient of the prestigious Filippas Engel award, a German award for sustainable and extraordinary actions. He is also a fellow at Stanford University in their American-Middle Eastern Network for Dialogue.

Vision: We need to scale more self-sustaining grassroots development models across refugee camps to further enhance social inclusion, social cohesion and psychosocial wellbeing among refugee youth. We must facilitate access to innovative tools that can support refugee youth in breaking the confines of established structural boundaries set for them in society.