Baltimore Washington Eagle Visits Kenya

During the month of February, Eagles top goal scorer, Gus Horsey was afforded an opportunity to do a three-day Auskick clinic in Nairobi, Kenya (Africa). The non-profit in conjunction with Auskick that made this possible is called Carolina for Kibera. They have actually set up shop in the slums of Kibera, and affect the lives of tens of thousands of underprivileged youths. At least 90% of the kids grow up playing non-organized European football from even the age of three. Those that can’t afford shoes play barefoot, and sometimes the ball that they play with is made up of rags with bailing twine holding it together.


‘The first day I worked with one of the team leaders named Abdul Hussein, who picked up the concept of Auskick quite readily. We discussed the positions on the field, ball-handling techniques, as well as kicking. Later he took me for about a five-mile walk through hilly terrain where just over 800,000 people live in stick-built houses with sheet metal roofs. We approached a couple of the shared pitches where some of the bigger kids play soccer daily. There was very little grass in the playing areas, and Carolina for Kibera had built official size soccer goals with proceeds from some of their donations.’


The non-profit organization is partnered with another organization called “Binti Pamoja” (daughters united) which shares a clinic to inform, diagnose, and treat those inhabitants that may be HIV positive. AIDS is indeed a large issue for Kibera as well as other parts of Africa. The politic and religious struggles have also lead to many unnecessary deaths in the area. Fortunately, Carolina for Kibera help to untie the political ties, and teaches the kids how to sustain their community; and being able to participate in sports is just one of the benefits the children look forward to as well as a renewed sense of self worth.

‘The next day we started working with some of the older kids closely; because these are the kids that will keep Auskick going. Although we have only introduced this sport in
Kenya for the first time, the kids took to it with open arms.


By the last day several girls had become involved, and eventually were not intimated by playing against boys. Amazingly, although they didn’t kick the ball further than 10 meters the girls kicked the ball straight from the beginning. Although I had been in a couple of Denis Ryan’s Auskick clinics in the past, I didn’t realize what he meant when he says “everyone can have a kick.” Watching fifty kids playing soccer with one ball puts the phrase into perspective. Many players are constantly neglected, and it is a Darwinist structure. But when these kids played Auskick they functioned as a team every time. I have committed to getting back to Kenya at least two more times this year to monitor the kids progress and run more advanced clinics. I would like to thank Denis Ryan and USFooty for providing some footys, baseball caps, pamphlets and games/skills CDs.’


The BW Eagles will be collecting donations to design and purchase some penny jumpers and shorts from Under Armour that I will hand deliver sometime mid-summer. If anyone would be interested in participating in another clinic in Kenya, please contact Denis Ryan by email to  For pictures and more information on the Baltimore Washington Eagles, click here.

- Gus Horsey

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