Updated: Oct 29, 2021
Things are happening at a breakneck speed at Aliguma Foundation. The DREAM is real.
Four years since we came into existence, we are pleased to announce that we will have a permanent home in Masindi District – 210 kilometres from the Ugandan capital city of Kampala.
Joy Unconfined: CEO Ritah Aliguma (5th R), co-director Saltray Lubega (3rd L) and Masindi District Local Government Engineer Sunday Joseph Atwooki (L) are joined by the foundation's volunteers in a mock pose after the ground breaking ceremony in Kinuma Village, Masindi District.
The Aliguma Foundation Sports & Empowerment Centre – under the tagline of ‘Changing
Lives Through Sports & Enterprise’ - will be located on a 15-acre plot of land in Kinuma
Village – Bigando Parish, Miirya Sub-County, just 10 kilometres from Masindi Town.
Sports & Enterprise
The plateau-like plot that is currently, partly filled with Eucalyptus citriodora (Kalintusi) will have six acres dedicated to sports with the rest going to farming including a demonstration greenhouse for teaching and empowering purposes for the people of the area and beyond, poultry, piggery, rabbit-keeping, cottages for accommodation and administration blocks, some of which will be work stations for locals engaging in enterprise activities like; shoe making, bakery, reusable pads making, tailoring, house-keeping, child care, nutrition, phone repair, computer literacy, finance and business development among others.
All To Benefit: The grader and excavator at work to ensure there is a new community road that will not only offer the foundation an easier access route from the main road to the empowerment centre but also be used by all natives and visitors to the village.
The eventful ground-breaking ceremony took place earlier this week in the presence of Masindi District Local Government Engineer Sunday Joseph Atwooki, Confederation of African Football (CAF) Stadium Inspector Ivan Kintu Bayige, former Uganda Sports Press Association president Sabiiti Muwanga and Aliguma Foundation (AF) CEO Ritah Aliguma alongside Kinuma Village elders.
Haven for sports disciplines
The sports facility will comprise of two soccer fields; one main ground with a running track and covered stands, a side soccer training pitch plus a court apiece for tennis, basketball, netball and volleyball as well as a swimming pool. It will also have a different access road to the centre.
Men At Work: Masindi District Local Government Engineer Sunday Joseph Atwooki (3rd R) Confederation of African Football Stadium Inspector Ivan Kintu Bayige (2nd L), FUFA Appeals Committee member Sabiiti Muwanga (C) CEO Ritah Aliguma (3rd L) alongside Kinuma Village elders savour a photo opportunity soon after inspecting the 15-acre plot of land that will be the home of the foundation.
“This is a dream come true for me and us as Aliguma Foundation,” the emotional patron of the foundation Ritah Aliguma poured out her heart while addressing the full house of natives from Miirya Sub County that attended the historic event.
“Since my earlier days as a journalist when I covered stories from areas with disadvantaged people and refugee areas, I used to dream about doing something like this. I don’t even know how much it will cost in the end but I am happy we have started.
“I would like to thank the UEFA Foundation For Children who have funded the kickoff stages of this centre through the Sports for Resilience and Empowerment Project (SREP).
Quick high fives
“Special applause goes to Joel Boutroe, the Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Uganda, for supporting the foundation right when he came to Uganda in 2019 and for giving a nod to this particular centre.
"We also have to thank the foundation’s close confidant Moses Isingoma, an engineer based in South Sudan, who took time off his schedule to come to Uganda and scout for us this piece of land that we acquired after he bargained for us well.
Fertile Land: Local farmers and cattle-keepers have previously used the area for herding and grazing cattle as well as growing Eucalyptus citriodora (Kalintusi) amongst other cash crops.
“We wouldn’t have been able to get a better hazard-free plot thanks to our busy schedules back in Kampala. And that means we wouldn’t have been here. Now we vow not to look back but progress with works at a steady speed,” added Ritah Aliguma.
The engineers swung into action immediately with Atwooki leading his team of five to construct a new 800m road from the Kampala-Masindi Highway that shall connect to the centre’s main entrance. Ugandan stadium inspector Bayige also circumnavigated the plot, helped open up the boundaries and picked the area suitable for the soccer pitches and other social amenities.
Let's Play: CEO Ritah Aliguma (2nd R) flanked by her father Steven Magezi Nyakana (R) hands over balls to the area chairman Godfrey Isingoma (L) and the women's representative as a symbol to show that the foundation is all about sports and enterprise.
Kakiri-based farmer Faisal Sserwadda, on assignment after being recommended by the foundation’s friends in the USA, also made a pick for where the farming will best be done and animal breeding structures will be erected.
Community leaders’ pledge
“Aliguma Foundation is welcome to our village. We are going to love and support you all the way,” said Kinuma Village LC 1 chairman Godfrey Isingoma after receiving two balls from Ritah Aliguma, as a sign of the foundation’s commitment to sports development in the area.
Glory Be To God: There was a lot of singing and dancing as Aliguma Foundation was welcomed to Masindi District. Most of it was giving thanks to the Lord Almighty for a new dawn in the area of Miirya Sub-County.
“Kinuma will never be the same again. Your livelihoods are going to change forever. I urge you to support Aliguma Foundation. I think you have already seen the good things that are bound to come if you offer your help and cooperation,” said Isingoma while pointing to the congregated people including no less than 50 young men.
The two-day ground breaking ceremony activities ended with a cake-cutting ceremony that witnessed the elated area’s mothers and girls break into song and dance as a gesture of being grateful to AF for having come to their village. They will be hoping it forthwith brings development.
Allure Of Cake: What's a function in the times of Aliguma Foundation without cake-cutting at the end? The village leaders and CEO Ritah Aliguma did the honours and later served the people.
The SREP venture is a long-term project that is looking to use sport and trade skills to empower no less than 3,000 children and 1,000 caregivers to escape social and economic exclusion by 2023. The task at hand for Aliguma Foundation is to make sure the project is success and people can earn from their works by drafting user manuals, best practice briefs and articles, conduct research studies and project evaluation.
Taking Shape: A sneak-peek at how spacious the two-way carrier access road from Kampala-Masindi Highway to the Aliguma Foundation Sports & Empowerment Centre will look like.
To support this initiative, please contact us on either firstname.lastname@example.org or www.aligumafoundation.org. Or donate through our donate button on website or mobile on +256774235155 /+256704235155