Syrian and Iraqi refugees living in Hume are being encouraged to connect with their new community through the world game.

Last week, the Centre for Multicultural Youth (CMY), Hume council and Football Federation Victoria launched the Welcome Football Project in Broadmeadows to bring together newly-arrived refugees.

The project also involves local schools and soccer clubs, including Upfield and Craigieburn.

Refugees will have the chance to take part in a series of in-school, after school and holiday soccer programs.

CMY chief executive Carmel Guerra said the project would build connections in the community.

“It doesn’t take long to get a sense of the passion that’s felt for football among many of these young people and it’s another great example of football being a universal language,” she said.