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Palestinian Territories

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Meet Sherine - the football star at SOS Children's Village Bethlehem

Sherine grew up in SOS Children's Village Bethlehem, and now plays for the Palestine national football team for girls
Sherine grew up in SOS Children's Village Bethlehem, and now plays for the Palestine national football team for girls

SOS Children's Villages are home to talented and aspiring young people, eager to show their potential to the world. As the 2014 World Cup kicks off, we're boasting about a football star growing up in our Village in Bethlehem. Sherine's footie skills have taken her across three continents. Yet despite her natural talent on the pitch, her dream job is not to be a footballer...

Fourteen years ago, baby Sherine was moved from the hospital where she was born to SOS Children's Village Bethlehem, in the Palestinian Territories. As Sherine's biological parents were unable to look after her, she joined an SOS family and has grown up under the loving care of SOS Mother Amerh ever since.

Every child in our Villages is encouraged and supported to pursue their interests and hobbies. For Sherine, that meant all things sporty. At seven years old she loved playing basketball, and later her talent for swimming shone through when she won several school medals for the sport.

Children playing football at CV Palestine
A kick about at SOS Children's Village Bethlehem, where
Sherine's talent for football was nurtured

However, it was only when Sherine began playing for the SOS Children's Village football team at nine years old, that her passion for footie took off. Everyone who saw her on the pitch noticed she had a natural talent for 'the beautiful game'. 

Football matches across the world

Today, Sherine is a shy fourteen year old - that is, until the subject turns to football, and then she becomes a chatterbox! Sherine has a lot to talk about when it comes to her main hobby, and the incredible opportunities it has led to. Soon after she began playing football, she was selected by the Palestine Association for Children’s Encouragement of Sports (PACES). She then joined the Palestine national football team for girls, and had her first trip abroad when they played in a football championship in Norway.

The girls team has since played football matches in Japan, Sri Lanka, Sweden, and most recently, in Qatar in 2013. Sherine loves going to their regular training sessions at Faisal Al Husseini International Stadium - the home stadium of the official Palestine national football team, sitting 12,500 people.

sponsor a child in Palestine
Sherine promises to visit her SOS
family every day once she moves
into the SOS Youth Home.

When I grow up I want to be...

When not travelling, Sherine focuses on her studies at school in the West Bank. Unsurprisingly she enjoys her sports lessons the most, but also excels at Maths and Science. Her other main interest, beside football, is medicine. Most specifically she is interested in cures for cancer, after the deaths of her biological mother and cousin due to the disease.

When the national ‘Palestinian Campaign for Fighting Cancer’ visited the Children's Village in Bethlehem six months ago, Sherine asked the volunteers many questions, impressing them with her medical knowledge and commitment. Sherine is now the youngest volunteer of the campaign, and tours schools and universities to raise awareness about cancer and fundraise for the cause.

So which of her interests does Sherine wish to pursue in the future: football or medicine? Sherine has told Amerh, her SOS mother, that she hopes to become a medical doctor and help people suffering from cancer, like her biological mother did. As with all other children growing up in SOS families, we will help Sherine to make her dream a reality. Soon she will be moving into an SOS Youth Home, where she will be supported to complete higher education, and live independently. Just five minutes away from the Children's Village, she has promised her SOS siblings and SOS Mother Amerh that she will visit them every day.

We are proud of Sherine, and all the children growing up in SOS Children's Villages, for their amazing achievements and ambition. Learn more about how we support children as they transition into independent and confident young adults at SOS Youth Homes.

Alternatively, find out how you can sponsor a child in Palestine, ensuring they receive all they need to flourish. 

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