Athletes for Hope Australia
Bachar Houli is an Australian rules footballer who played for the Richmond Football Club in the Australian Football League. He is a three-time premiership player with Richmond and was named an All-Australian half-back during his 2019 premiership winning season.
He was raised a devout Muslim, praying five times a day and observing a comprehensive fast during the holy month of Ramadan.
Bachar has become a community leader and particular inspiration for young Australian Muslims participating in Australian rules football and community sport. His Bachar Houli Foundation has reached over 35,000 participants in its seven year history.
He was praised for his community engagement work in 2017 by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who said Bachar's work with Muslim youth was of "extreme and extraordinary importance."
In 2012, Bachar received the inaugural Award for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding, awarded by the Australia Day Council and the University of South Australia's Centre for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding.
Bachar received the AFL's prestigious Jim Stynes Community Leadership Award for his work in promoting social cohesion with Muslim youth through his Foundation in 2020 and, in 2021, received the Anti-Defamation League's Torch of Justice Award for his community work and stand against racism, hate and bullying.
One thing that comes from being a minority group and succeeding is that you're made into a role model well ahead of your time.
- BACHAR HOULI -
3 times AFL Premiership Player (Richmond) 2017, 2019, 2020
2019 All Australian Team
Jim Stynes Community Leadership Award: 2020 - AFL player recognition for community service
Recipient of the Torch of Justice Award by the Anti-Defamation Commission (ADC)
Founder of the Bachar Houli Foundation in partnership with the Richmond Football Club
The Bachar Houli Foundation
Bachar Houli has embarked on a journey to make a difference through fostering young Muslims with a sense of belonging through football development.
The Bachar Houli Foundation (BHF) is a unique non-for-profit organisation that aims to develop young leaders within the Muslim community. The BHF aims to support social cohesion by fostering young Muslims with a sense of belonging through football development. The foundation also creates employment pathways through traineeships and builds cross-community bridges by promoting social inclusion through elite football programs.
The BHF delivers its football programs through the AFL with a team of experts including Richmond premiership player, Bachar Houli (Head Coach), former St Kilda forward Ahmed Saad (Program Manager) and Ali Fahour (General Manager) who has over 10 years’ experience in the development of multicultural programs.
Since establishment, the foundation has developed seven successful programs; each has a unique focus around football development, employment, leadership and identity.
The foundation has succeeded in cementing itself as the first Muslim Football Academy in Australia for young aspiring Muslim athletes. In just seven years it has developed a reach of over 35,000 participants.