Football is one of the games which needs serious investment, especially monetary in order to develop players from the grassroots level.
Because of the expenditure involved, very few people have sacrificed their little resources to develop the most prominent game in Uganda.
The few of those who have sacrificed their little resources are mainly men, with a few ladies having the interest of the game: but again a slim percentage of those few are willing to invest in the development of football.
This though is not the case with Shakira Nalweyiso, the director of Yeager Charity Soccer Academy based in Kibuli.
The energy level of this young lady in her twenties is more than ready to develop the skills of young children in her academy to turn them into professional footballers.
Yaeger Charity Soccer Academy was founded in 2017, and it accommodates 215 children with 15 of those being girls aged five years to 18.
They are taught the basics of football on a daily basis during holidays from 1400HRS to 1730HRS at the Police Children School playground in Kibuli.
“I got most of these children from the streets. Their lives were miserable and I felt like they should live a meaningful life,” Nalweyiso told www.football-256.com before adding.
“I collected the orphans whose parents were former police officers. I requested the Nsambya barracks residents to accommodate and feed them as I couldn’t manage that cost as well as accommodating them. Few of them are from their parents’ homes around Kibuli.”
“For education, I search for bursaries for them from different schools ranging from primary level to secondary level,” she added.
The academy has two coaches who are paid by Nalweyiso from her personal savings, each of the coaches is paid 200,000/= per month.
“It’s not enough but it’s all I can afford for now, if one day we get partners maybe the livelihoods of the coaches and the children will change,” Nalweyiso noted.
For the facilitation of the academy, like balls, training kits, shoes, jerseys among others; Nalweyiso purchases for them with the help of funding from Yeager Development Agency where she works as the programmes manager.
But for a child to acquire the possession of the kits, they must pay a registration fee of Ushs 10,000 each which is also a big ask.
“I brought the tendency of the registration fee in order to reduce on the number of children which was growing every day but they find it difficult to raise that amount, sometimes I leave them to train minus paying because I want to brighten their future.”
“My target is not getting money from them in any way because this is a charity-oriented academy, but all I want is to see these children living a good life in the future, their well-being is my happiness,” she added.
One of Yeager Charity Soccer Academy coaches Robert Onyango also told this website that their main target is to make sure that they teach these children football at its best.
“Our main target is to teach football to these young children. We want them to move places because of what we are teaching them here.”
“We always find life challenging here due to the few equipments at the academy. Some parents are not supportive to their children but due to commitment, we make sure that we get the best out of them.”
“The children are hard to handle as some of them are slow learners, others are inconsistent in attendance and others have problems which are beyond our control like family problems. But we always talk to them to make sure that we find a way of solving them,” he added.
Due to the fact that most of them are orphans, Nalweyiso is the closest to a mother these children have and she makes sure she meets some of their needs.
Among those is giving them some little upkeep, buying them basic necessities in life and making sure that they are clean and smart just like a mother would wish of her children which makes them feel at home at the academy.