The American Football teams in Kenya are taking positive strides towards impacting the communities in Nairobi. On the 25th Feb 2017, the University of Nairobi, Jomo Kenyatta University, and Umoja Chiefs in coordination with IICEP (Integrated Initiatives for Community Empowerment) and the American Embassy participated in an event which saw children from slums including Mathare, Dandora and Pumwani come together to learn about conflict resolution and peaceful communal co-existence.
The event had been organized by Hassan Ali, the chairman IICE and Farah Eck, a peace building training volunteer, with the purpose of bringing children from violence-prone areas together and teaching them the value of peace and co-existence.
The Kenyan National Team took this opportunity to introduce the children to the game with a ‘play for peace’ mantra meant to reach even more communities in the city in future. The event also featured introductory games of flag football and a demo game of tackle football that only featured the players from the national team.
The children were however given a chance to take part in the game by running the football and catching the ball in a flag football format.
Biggy helps to organize players positions.
The KFAF chairman, Mr George Alwang’a stated that plans were underway to grow the game in slums and even establish new teams through this initiative.
Farah Eck, a volunteer peace building trainer was quite pleased with the success of the event. “I had an opportunity to work with enthusiastic kids and that meant a lot to me.” She commented.
Farah Eck highlights how to resolve differences.
Representatives from the US embassy were also present at the event and found the manner in which the event had been handled commendable. The use of sports as a medium for peace building had been conceived by Mrs Rukiya Mwinyi. “The ‘play for peace’ initiative might pass but the message of peace will forever stay with these kids and make them better people.”She noted while giving her views on the impact of the initiative.
Play for Peace Sponsors
Integrated Initiatives for Community Empowerment (IICEP)
US Emassay Nairobi, Kenya
Coach Dan Eck and Mark Omondi (JKUAT SPARROWS) 7v7 flag footb