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InnovativeCommunities.Org Foundation

Friends Building Global Community

The Kick Off of "Togther We Can!"

ICO Web Editor's picture

From Mark and Jennifer in Bondo:

The ICO Foundation, in cooperation with the Bondo Community Trust, sponsored the “Together We Can!” football tournament held on 24 & 31 March 2012 in Bondo, Kenya.  The purpose of the tournament was to help empower the many orphans (due to the high 24% HIV/AIDS rate in this area) of Dier Aora and Atilili primary schools – most of those children never get to play soccer.  There were 32 combined teams (girls and boys) between the 2 schools, from Grades (Standards) 1-8.  Vita Merchant Agencies Ltd, located in Nairobi, Kenya, produced 140 beautiful orange and blue custom made uniforms with the ICO logo on them.  Nutritious snacks and a certificate of participation were provided for each player, plus tea and food for the officials and teachers.   

Day 1 of the big tournament was played at Dier Aora Primary School on 24 March, and was opened by prayers and speeches under a large tree.  It was a big success, where over 350 children got their foot to the ball and all 16 matches were played under the scorching equatorial sun.  The smart looking ICO uniforms were a big hit with both the kids and spectators...when the first group of little ones trotted out of the change rooms, the crowd erupted into cheers and clapping, and the kids lifted their chins high...it must have felt to them that they were in the Olympics!  An ICO videographer even travelled here from Kampala, Uganda to film the event, and the finished product will be put on the internet soon.

Day 2 of the tournament was played at Atilili Primary School on 31 March, and the 10 matches played comprised the semi-finals and finals.  There were six winning teams: Lower, Middle, and Upper Class Boys and Girls.  These teams received ribbons, rulers, and juice drinks, in addition to one ICO soccer ball per team which will be used by the schools.  The tournament was closed with a prayer, speeches, and trophy awards for the Lower Class Girls and Boys winning teams.  Also, the most valuable boy and girl player was announced, with each child receiving a pair of sneakers.

ICO is working on follow-up plans for use of these uniforms in Bondo (or elsewhere in Africa), either within the school system or outside of it.  A set of ICO uniforms has already been used twice by a casual youth league which plays near the centre of town.  Stay tuned for more updates!

 

ICO Initiatives

September 17, 2014
ICO’s Instruments4Africa provides opportunities to underprivileged children in Mali, one of Africa's poorest countries, to get an education and reach their potential. Building on Mali’s rich artistic culture, children receive performing arts training, and are part of a performing arts troupe guided by professional dance and music teachers.