In December of 2017, Mark and Kathy Priddle of the Almonte Soccer Club headed to Uganda and Kenya with 24 ASC 50th Anniversary soccer balls (footballs in east Africa). These balls were handed out as gifts in these two football-crazy nations. Balls were delivered directly to a football pitch on the side of the road near Mbarara, southwest of Kampala in Uganda. The ball was greeted with great delight as these young folks had been playing with a cabbage.
Next stop was a new simple school in Budaali (Namayumba), northwest of Kampala. The school has a small pitch, but no balls. We dropped two balls and a pump, much to the delight of several children.
In Kenya, we partook in a Christmas Break camp at Capstone Preparatory School just outside Eldoret. The school had just one worn out football, so we left a pump and several balls. After handing out these balls, we had a furious game (Kenya vs. Canada) in the dusty yard of the school. We were also able to pass out a few more balls to pastors and teachers with large numbers of youth in their charge in small towns in northeastern Kemya. During our travels, we left balls with our driver and some lonely guards in a National Park.
Overall, it was a very rewarding experience and we know that hundreds of young Ugandans and Kenyans will have a better chance to participate in the world’s most popular sport. Thanks to everyone at ASC (executive, volunteers, players).