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
"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."
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
Kalungi 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 (ADP).
Last updated: 12/13/2012