Henry Kalungi '09, a member of the Richmond Kickers since the 2009 championship season, and
current captain of the squad, has worked in his home country of Uganda during
the off-season in an effort to improve the lives of children through soccer.
Kalungi is director and co-founder of the Uganda Youth Soccer Academy
(UYSA) which is a community based soccer academy established to offer
opportunities to the disadvantaged youth of Uganda through soccer and education.
"We started this academy with a goal of helping the orphans from
slums and other places to earn a life," said Kalungi. "I go early in the morning
on Wednesdays and Saturdays to coach the kids and teach them life skills and to
encourage positive decisions."
One of the prominent non-profit
soccer academies, UYSA is dedicated to discovering potential in talented players
through specific developmental programs for children of all ages. The academy
provides professional soccer coaching activities to more than 400 talented boys
and girls ages of 3-17, many of whom are orphans or displaced by the northern
and eastern war. In addition to soccer, the academy assists the children in
attaining basic education while providing leadership training to develop
sportsmanship and good values.
"We transform the lives of children
who are living in the streets or slums, with a piece of plastic to cover
themselves, one meal a day, no school and a poor future with no one to believe
in them," adds Ivan Kakembo, UYSA country director. "We inspire them to realize
that they are also someone no matter where they came from as orphans."
"I feel the position that I am in right now and the way these kids live, I
have to do all that I can through this academy to help change their lives," said
Kalungi. "I know it is not easy, but I am determined to help and make sure some
of these kids don’t end up back on the streets." Read more
on Kalungi's efforts.
Originally from Kampala, Uganda, Kalungi has
represented his country for several years as a member of the Uganda
National Team. Kalungi played in the recent Uganda National Team's 2-1
win for the CECFA
championship for 2012 for central and east African countries. He also
joined the national team for the African Cup of Nations 2012 qualifier
with Guinea Bissau, held on March 26, 2011.
former coach, Winthrop head coach Rich Posipanko, is very proud
of his accomplishments. "Like Henry has said, it is an honor for any athlete to
compete at the highest level and for your country. He deserves everything he
gets out of soccer," Posipanko said. "His attitude, his work ethic and his
desire to succeed are very professional, and he’s one of the best players I ever
coached. I truly think his best years are ahead of him."
came to the United States to play for Winthrop, earning honors as All-Big South
in 2006, as well as team MVP, Big South All-Tournament Team and NSCAA/adidas
All-South Atlantic Region Team.
Prior to joining the Kickers,
Kalungi spent a season with the Premier Development League side Fredericksburg
Gunners, making 14 appearances and posting four shutouts. In 2009, Kalungi
joined the Kickers and earned USL Second Division Player of the Week Honors on
two occasions. The 2010 campaign was no different for the Ugandan international,
earning another USL-2 Player of the Week nod for his defensive efforts. An
advocate for youth player development in Richmond as well, Kalungi acts as a
coach for the Richmond Kickers Youth Soccer Club Advanced Development Program
Last updated: 12/13/2012