As the partnership between Arsenal and Volunteer Uganda is a new one, one of the most important tasks of our first week was to ensure we had all the necessary equipment before we left Kampala, and also come up with a coaching programme. While we awaited the arrival of the volunteers, spending the time putting together a timetable meant we could hit the ground running as soon as we got to the south-west.
Volunteer Uganda puts people on six or twelve week placements teaching in primary schools. Whereas the volunteer teachers tend to spend all their time in one school, we have decided along with the VU team leaders to spend each week at a different school. The teachers benefit from the fact that they really get to know the personalities of all the children in their class, but we want to meet and coach as many young people as possible. So as well as primary schools we have put together a plan that includes secondary schools, colleges and football teams.
We are also keen to coach girls, given that we believe that they don’t usually get the same opportunities for sport as boys. We are unsure whether culturally this will be possible but the Ugandans we’ve spoken to in Kampala seem to think it will be fine.
The last thing we needed to do was ensure we had the necessary equipment. I’m led to believe that our home for the next ten weeks or so, Kanungu, is very beautiful, and certainly the photos and videos I’ve seen bear this out. However, it’s also pretty remote, so things like bibs and cones will be difficult to get hold of. We are awaiting the delivery of fifty footballs from Arsenal, but we can’t sit and do nothing until they arrive so we have had to go out and buy some. We are grateful to the Lions Club of Linköping in Sweden for their generous donation, and of course Jesper for applying for it. This has allowed us to buy balls, pumps, bibs, cones and even a replica of the world cup trophy (but of course even more prestigious)! At the end of our time in Kanungu, we will present it to the winners of the inaugural Lions Tournament!
Posted on April 30, 2012, in 08. Preparations and tagged Arsenal, Arsenal coaches in Africa, Arsenal coaches in Uganda, Arsenal in Africa, Arsenal in Uganda, football coaching in Africa, football coaching in Uganda, Lions Club, teaching placements, volunteer, Volunteer Uganda. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.