Young Colombian refugees find new lifeline in Ecuador

As a large number of refugees from Colombia struggle to build a new life in Ecuador, a non-profit group offers a new lifeline to hundreds of young people in the form of a football programme called Fudela.

Photo by: TRT World screen shot
Photo by: TRT World screen shot

Harold Bedoya is one of the hundreds of young Colombian refugees in Ecuador where they find new hope for a better future after joining a non-profit football programme.

Colombia has the largest number of internally displaced persons in the world, according to UN agency for refugees.

Some 6.7 million people are displaced inside Colombia, making up around 13 percent of the entire population, says a UNHCR report.

According to official figures, 360,000 refugees from the Andean nation have fled abroad, most of them to Ecuador — which hosts the largest number of refugees in Latin America.

Discrimination, trauma, and economic hardships have kept some of them from building a new life in a country that's not their own.

But now hundreds of young refugees have found a new lifeline under a project of a non-profit group.  

Journalist Carolina Loza Leon brings more from Quito, Ecuador.