Farhad Kohistani – a professional volleyball player – shared his sport’s background, experience, and achievements as well as practical tips for other asylum seekers to pursue their healthiness and stability.
Farhad Kohistani, 22 from Afghanistan, has been playing Volleyball since his early days as an asylum seeker in Denmark in 2011. Since then his skills have been consistently improving and he became one of the top players on his teams in Avnø and Avnstrup asylum centers.
“As a young asylum seeker I was under the impact of immense psychological pressure such as flashbacks, trauma, insomnia, losing weight and etc, hence, I decided to find a way to relieve the pressure, so volleyball is the best thing for me to go out and exercise in order to remain healthy and stable.”
Remaining in the box
Farhad is very committed to continuing his Volleyball career in the future, but being an asylum seeker makes it very difficult for him to join professional clubs and attend tournaments. He says, “We asylum seekers cannot afford to pay our small sport’s expenses such as clothing, shoes, daily refreshment, transportation tickets, admission fee and other costs ”.
Farhad advises other asylum seekers not to destroy their health by taking different kinds of drugs, tobacco or even sleeping pills when they are facing pressure in asylum centers or when they miss their loved ones who remained behind. Instead, no matter where they are, they should not lay down in bed and have nightmares; they must go out and play sports that interest them, or continue those fields that they have been following in their own respective countries.
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In the course of his Volleyball career, Farhad has achieved “9 medals and 2 tournament’s victory cups.” In addition to these achievements he has “4 gold medals from Muay Thai (Martial arts)” and many other encouragement awards.
He has been playing not only in the asylum centers but even played on the Roskilde team for months. Before playing volleyball, he played professional football for 8 years when he was living in Russia from 1998-2010 and in addition to these games, he has played Muay Thai (Martial arts) as well.