Meriam Demirović: The Refugee Olympic Team

Meriam Demirović

Meriam Demirovic could be the most inspiring tale of the year 2016. Her birthplace was a home for refugees from war-ravaged Bosnia Demirovic was a goalkeeper with her sights set on the top of the list at an early age. In 2012 she became the first goalkeeper from a female within the history of FIFA to compete during the women’s world cup.

Meriam Demirović

In the next year, she set records again , becoming the first female to participate for the Olympic Games as a goalkeeper. The story of her life is one that displays strength and determination and is one can all take a lesson from. In this blog we’ll explore the process Demirovic endured to be an Olympic champion, and how you can implement some of her tips to your own life.

Meriam Demirovic Early Life

Meriam Demirovic was born 17 December 1994, in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. At the age of six years old her family fled from to Canada following the Bosnian War to seek refuge in Canada. Despite being young, Meriam quickly learned to adapt to her new life and started competing in track and field as an infant.

Meriam Demirović

In 2014 at the age 20years old, Meriam was the very first refugee to win the Olympic gold medal. She achieved this feat with the victory in the women’s 10,000 meters event in the Rio de Janeiro Olympics. Meriam’s story has inspired many across the globe and she has since set out to assist refugees to find a place to stay and build the possibility of a better future.

Meriam Demirovic: The Refugee Olympic Team

The Refugee Olympic Team

Meriam Demirovic is an exiled Olympian. Her birthplace was during the Bosnian War, which left her father and two sisters dead. Demirovic left Bosnia along with her mother as well as two brothers younger when she was only seven years old. They first came to Austria before settling in Canada in the year 2000.

Demirovic began her career in the pool in the age 12 when she has won medals in several international events. In 2009 Demirovic became the very first Canadian to win an Olympic silver medal in the World Championships in the 200-meter breaststroke. She also took part in the 2012 Summer Olympics and was unable to make it to the final. She took home the bronze medal during Rio Olympics. Rio Olympics for the 200m breaststroke.

Demirovic’s story provides source of inspiration for many young refugees looking for a safe and secure place where they can call their home. Her accomplishments show that anything is achievable if you put your mind to it and put in the effort.

Meriam Demirovic’s Career as an Olympian

Meriam Demirovic has always dreamed to become an Olympian In 2016, she turned that dream into a reality. She took part during Rio de Janeiro. Rio de Janeiro events as a refugee, and came out with the distinction of being one of the top athletes from her homeland.

Meriam Demirović

Demirovic was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1990 to a Bosnian-Herzegovinian mother and Egyptian father. When the civil war broke out within Bosnia in 1992 her family left for Egypt. In Egypt, Meriam attended school before returning home to Bosnia together with her parents when she was just 10 years old.

In 2000 at the age of Meriam was only 14 years old older the father of her was murdered in a vehicle accident. The tragedy forced her mother to take over the primary role of household breadwinner. When she completed high school, Demirovic emigrated to Egypt to pursue a degree in the field of business and business administration at City University London. In London, she made the decision to embark on an Olympic career, and changed her concentration to track and field.

In 2013 at the age 22 years old, Demirovic became the first female to ever come born in Bosnia and Herzegovina to qualify for an Olympic race, the 100-meter dash. She later represented her country in the IAAF World Championships later that year. In Brazil four years later, she became the first Bosnian-Herzegovinian athleteever to compete in an Olympic

After the Olympics

Meriam Demirovic is an extraordinary athlete and strong symbol of strength when faced with adversity. Born to a refugee family from the war-ravaged country in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Meriam suffered through years of terror and violence before fleeing the country in 2013. She travelled to Europe and sought asylum in Hungary. In the event she wanted to compete with Bosnia during the 2014 World Championships in Athletics the country denied her citizenship as she had not resided in Bosnia for the entirety of the years of her youth – a prerequisite for athletes hailing from that country.

However, Meriam competed under her own name, and came in 8th in the event. In the next year she was the first Bosnian female athlete to represent her country in an Olympics at Rio de Janeiro. In the women’s 5,000-meter race, Meriam finished 14th overall with the time that was 16:51.58 minutes.

Meriam Demirović

After winning the gold medal in the Olympic Games on August 12th, Meriam has been met with awe across the globe. Meriam’s story is one of determination and perseverance in the face of unimaginable obstacles; it’s also an example of the millions of refugees who are still seeking refuge and a better life in the world.


Meriam Demirovic was a former refugee who overcome adversity in order to be an Olympic champion. Her birthplace was within Bosnia and Herzegovina, she as well as their family members were forcibly to leave their homes in the Bosnian War in the 1990s. After a time in a camp for refugees and finally arriving at the border of America when they were 11. Despite her limited English knowledge and no prior sports prior experience, Meriam persevered and worked tirelessly to achieve her goals. In 2016 she was the world’s first Refugee Olympic Champion when she was awarded the gold medal at the 800-meter women’s event at the Rio Olympics. Her story is inspiring not just for her remarkable athletic achievements but as well because she fights against challenges – including language barriers that many would be willing to give up on.

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