Supporting Refugees One Run at a Time

One of atlasGO’s partners, SINGA, has launched the Comme À La Maison (CALM) program to assist refugees by providing them housing and accommodation. Chloé Overlau from SINGA gives insight into the program and how partnering with atlasGO has helped them realize their goals to support refugees.

Tell us a bit more about CALM/SINGA!

SINGA is an association that creates bonds between refugees and those able to provide accommodations in the host society. Through workshops, cultural outings, and individual and group meetings, SINGA brings together a community eager to share its passions and skills. 

SINGA allows anyone to realize their potential, develop their project, and gives space and means to those wishing to propose innovative solutions to foster the inclusion of newcomers in society.

Since February 2019, SINGA has launched the Comme À La Maison (CALM) program. This program offers temporary accommodation in Brussels, Belgium to individuals who have recently received the refugee status. CALM is an intercultural encounter and a mutual enrichment through co-housing to foster integration projects of refugees.

What inspired you to work with and support refugees?

Involved in welcoming refugees, the three co-founders worked on several structures that meet the specific needs of this audience (medical, administrative, etc.). However, none of them made up for the glaring lack of an essential element in the reconstruction of a life in Belgium: the absence of a social network.

How can someone start a new life without a network when it influences our life trajectories so much? How to create this network without having access to meeting spaces with locals and without knowing the Belgian socio-cultural codes nor the national language can be a barrier for many. 

SINGA France had already answered the question a few years earlier by utilizing the passions of individuals as a link between people. Intrigued by the idea and strong of a year of field analysis and meetings with mainly those in Brussels, the three founders decided to launch the movement in Belgium. 

The main goal: Building a community able to address these challenges and offering a positive and empowering answer to this growing reality.

How will this partnership with atlasGO help you reach your goals?

Through sport, atlasGO and SINGA are working to develop a new community eager to foster social cohesion. Together, they spread a spirit of inclusion and encourage beginner and expert athletes alike to support a project with a strong and positive impact.

What do you hope to achieve through this fundraising partnership?

Thanks to this challenge, we want to increase the visibility of this project and offer 40 people the opportunity to meet and exchange, all in a secure and decent house.


Chloé Overlau

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