On one of our early visits to Kibera in 2014, we spotted a few young people who were engaging the local youth by organising football games. It proved to be a welcome distraction from an otherwise negative culture where crime and unemployment rule and record levels of theft, robbery, sexual assault, and gang-related activities contribute to the Nairobi slums having a reputation of being the most dangerous in Africa.
Two young men from the slum decided to coach some young boys, and began to see real signs of improvement for the local players and more widely in the community. They trained the players, set up a barbershop to fund the club, established teams in a number of age categories, and over the years have even been able to place a team in the Kenyan National Football League Division Two.
Now engaging over 100 boys and girls each week the rebranded "Kenya Saints" Football Club is an incredible demonstration of what can be achieved, even from small beginnings.
In September 2022 (post-Covid pandemic) the UK team was able to catch up with Mark, Will, and Abdi whose vision and dedication have driven the club to be what it is today. This video interview captures some of the challenges over the years and at the same time demonstrates why Kenya Saints has such a great future.